Revealed: Reason for Lewis Hamilton contract delay

Lewis Hamilton has reportedly demanded a five-year contract extension from Mercedes.

Ex-Formula 1 driver turned pundit Martin Brundle believes the delay in Lewis Hamilton signing a new contract with Mercedes is because the Brackley-based team are “working through the detail”, following recent comments that a new deal is just “days” away from being signed.

Mercedes boss Toto Wolff revealed two weeks ago following the Spanish Grand Prix that Hamilton’s new contract would be ready in “days” rather than weeks, suggesting that an announcement would be made soon.

As of yet, nothing has been announced by the seven-time World Champion or the Silver Arrows, leaving many to wonder what’s holding up the deal.

Brundle doesn’t think it’s his “business” to discuss the matter and believes it’s simply a case of finalising all the minor details, something which Mercedes can take their time over given that Hamilton still has a contract until the end of 2023.

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“It’ll be the detail. I kind of feel it’s none of my business, his contract with the team in some respects,” Brundle told Sky Sports F1.

“Of course, we ask the questions. Lewis transcends this sport in many ways and I’m sure there will be elements in his contract that reflect that in other things that he does extra-curricular to driving the racing car as it were.

“Act in haste, repent in leisure. What’s the point? The current contract is still in play and I’m sure they’re just working through the detail.”

There have been several rumours over how long Hamilton’s contract extension will last, with some having reported that Mercedes will only offer a one-year deal.

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Others have reported that Hamilton is demanding a five-year contract, highlighting really how little is known about the whole thing.

One thing that is for certain in Brundle’s eyes, is that both parties have “cards to play”.

The Sky F1 commentator identified George Russell as one of Mercedes’ cards, given that the Germans already have Hamilton’s successor in place for when the Stevenage-born driver retires.

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Hamilton though can use the possibility of Mercedes designing another “underperforming car” as part of his negotiations, something the Germans had throughout 2022 and until they introduced their new concept this season.

“Mercedes have some cards to play. One of them will be George Russell,” said Brundle.

“Lewis will have some cards to play. One of them will be an underperforming car and things he wants to do. I’m sure they’re putting in place all sorts of milestones for the future.”