Lewis Hamilton forced Mercedes to ‘admit mistake’

Lewis Hamilton holds a lot of the chips in his ongoing contract negotiations with Toto Wolff and Mercedes.

Lewis Hamilton’s future with Mercedes appears to be secure, with indications that the seven-time world champion and the team will continue their successful partnership. 

While the specifics of the contract extension, including the duration and compensation, are yet to be disclosed, Damon Hill believes that Hamilton’s contributions in 2023 have solidified his position as a valuable asset to Mercedes, potentially granting him leverage in negotiations.

At the beginning of the season, when the winter tests revealed the lack of competitiveness of the W14 car, Hamilton openly expressed his disappointment, suggesting that Mercedes had not heeded his input. 

In the subsequent weeks, the 38-year-old British driver continued to exert pressure on his team to change their approach in developing the W14.

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The team responded by introducing significant updates in Monaco and Spain, which led to immediate improvements in performance, evident from podium finishes in Spain and Canada. 

This turnaround indicates that Mercedes has made substantial progress since the early part of the season, with Hamilton’s extensive experience playing a significant role in this resurgence, according to Hill. 

Furthermore, Hill argues that Hamilton’s influence positions him favourably during contract negotiations.

“He knows that the team has got his back, they know what they’ve got with him, and they will give him everything he possibly can,” Hill stated, commenting on Hamilton’s future.

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“He’s scored a point a bit this year because he’s got them to admit they’ve made a mistake. 

“They’ve changed direction, and they’re now heading in what seems to be the right direction, and he’s driving better now as well. 

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“It could be that he could have a car that he can contend for the championship with next year.”

Hamilton’s ability to rally the team and push for necessary adjustments has not only resulted in improved performance on the track but has also reaffirmed his value to Mercedes. 

The seven-time champion’s influence extends beyond his driving skills, showcasing his leadership and strategic prowess in guiding the team towards success.