Speaking to the media ahead of Sunday’s Styrian Grand Prix, Lewis Hamilton says he’s currently in discussions with Mercedes about a new deal and added that it’s looking positive.
Wolff and Hamilton said earlier this year that they didn’t want to delay things like they did for the 2021 deal. The official announcement only came back in February.
“We have begun discussions,” Hamilton said. “Not a lot to say, [not] too much on it, we have had discussions and things are positive.”
Speculation has been rising that George Rusell could join his fellow Brit at Mercedes next year. However, Hamilton stated that Bottas has been his best teammate in F1, explaining that’s it not just purely based on Bottas’ performances in the car.
“I think Valtteri has been the best teammate overall, and when I say teammate, it is not just about driver performance.
“It is about team morale, how you work in a teammate environment, and we’ll continue to improve on our communication and hopefully do better moving forwards.”
Hamilton added that he would be happy to continue with Bottas next year and believes things don’t automatically need to change.
“Valtteri is my teammate now and both of us have had ups and downs in our careers, Hamilton said.
“But like I said, he’s a fantastic teammate and I don’t necessarily see that it needs to change.”
It was confirmed on Thursday that the British Grand Prix would be held in front of a full capacity crowd. While he’s excited to see fans, the seven-time World Champion also feels it could be premature.
“I can’t tell you how excited I am to see people and to see the British crowd because it’s the best crowd of the whole year,” said Hamilton. “But I watch the news and I hear about [COVID-19] cases going up massively in the UK, so I am worried for people naturally.
“I read the vaccination is good in that fewer people are being hospitalised but it feels a bit premature to me.”
Despite the strict protocols for fans to attend the event, the home hero is against a sell-out event. The British Grand Prix has been included as one of the UK government’s pilot events as they attempt to get bumper crowds back to all sporting events.
“No, it’s been great that we’ve had people even at the last race and I have not heard any negative things from the last race,” he said. “But I like to err on the side of caution and slowly build up rather than go full pelt and using our British fans as a test pen.”
“I’m not in politics, I’m not in government,” Hamilton continued. “There has been lots of confusing things coming from government over time and I don’t understand it all.”