Lewis Hamilton: ‘I don’t want to stay here for another year’

Lewis Hamilton's current contract at Mercedes expires at the end of 2023, making him a free agent for 2024.

Seven-time World Champion Lewis Hamilton is looking increasingly set to remain in Formula 1 for “longer” than just “another year”, with the 38-year-old targeting a new “long term” deal with Mercedes.

Hamilton’s plans for the future has been a huge talking point for the entirety of the season so far, given how big a seat would become available should he decide to retire.

Despite his contract at Mercedes expiring this year, it is looking increasingly likely that a spot at Mercedes won’t be vacant anytime soon, with the Briton planning on a multi-year extension with the Germans.

Hamilton and Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff have informed the media already this season that a new contract will be signed at some point, with the Stevenage-born driver having spilled during the Azerbaijan Grand Prix what sort of contract he’s after.

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“I’m thinking long term. I don’t want to stay here for another year. I want to stay longer,” Hamilton said.

With that in mind, it’s looking likely that Hamilton will still be in F1 by the time he’s 40 years old, something he previously stated to being against.

A multi-year extension would also give Hamilton further opportunities to push for an unprecedented eighth world title, something which is almost certainly off the cards this season already.

The likelihood is that a new deal for Hamilton would see him remain at Mercedes until the end of 2025, before the new engine regulations are introduced in 2026.

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Given that 2026 will see the next big overhaul of the regs, the 103-time race winner may see 2025 as the correct time to retire from the sport, something which only time will tell.

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A new deal would, of course, mean that Charles Leclerc can’t make the switch from Ferrari to Mercedes, something which was reported ahead of Azerbaijan by Italian media.

It was rumoured that the Monegasque was having secret talks with Mercedes about replacing Hamilton; however, Leclerc and Wolff have both stated that no conversations have taken place.

So it appears that Mercedes will be sticking with the same driver line-up until at least the new engine regulations are introduced, although, Hamilton’s future will continue to be discussed until his signature is seen on a new contract.