Red Bull team principal Christian Horner has revealed ahead of this weekend’s Abu Dhabi Grand Prix that Lewis Hamilton did hold “serious talks” with Ferrari earlier in the season, whilst he also approached the Austrians.
Hamilton took an incredible amount of time to sign his new two-year deal with Mercedes, which wasn’t confirmed until ahead of the Italian Grand Prix earlier this year.
It had been rumoured that talks with Ferrari had taken place, although the seven-time World Champion insisted that the speculation was false.
However, Horner has since revealed that the seven-time World Champion did speak to the Maranello-based team and with Ferrari chairman John Elkann in particular.
Horner recalled the talks taking place around the Monaco Grand Prix, which took place back in May.
It’s not just Ferrari who Hamilton approached, as Horner also shared that the Mercedes driver’s representatives tried talking to Red Bull.
Red Bull certainly looks like the place to be for any driver wanting to win the Drivers’ Championship, as their dominance could continue for another two seasons.
Horner doesn’t see Hamilton ever moving to Red Bull though, as he admits that the “dynamic wouldn’t be right” with Max Verstappen.
“We have had several conversations over the years about Lewis joining,” Horner told the Daily Mail.
“They have reached out a few times. Most recently, earlier in the year, there was an inquiry about whether there would be any interest.
“’But I can’t see Max and Lewis working out together. The dynamic wouldn’t be right. We are 100 per cent happy with what we have.”
As for Hamilton’s talks with Ferrari, it seems that perhaps a deal was put on the table as reported.
It also appears that prior to signing his new contract, Hamilton did look for a Mercedes escape route.
“He met John Elkann, too. I think there were serious talks,” Horner revealed.
“’It was around Monaco (in May). There were definitely conversations, perhaps with Vasseur, too. But certainly with Elkann.”
The 103-time race winner enters this weekend’s season finale having secured third in the standings; however, he’ll need to be on his A-game to protect Mercedes’ P2 in the Constructors’ Championship.
Mercedes sit just four points ahead of Ferrari, with that being the main storyline behind the season finale.