Lewis Hamilton won’t commit to a new Mercedes contract before the first race of the 2023 season, London Insider can exclusively reveal.
Sources familiar with the matter told London Insider that Hamilton wants to first see how the Mercedes W14 stacks up against the competition before he makes a decision.
This comes off the back of a challenging 2022 season for the Briton and Mercedes, which saw the seven-time champion finish behind George Russell in the standings and fail to win a single grand prix.
Hamilton’s current deal with Mercedes will expire at the end of this year, but Toto Wolff recently assured that an extension will be worked out over the winter break.
“We have a full year to go,” Wolff said this month.
“We’re so aligned in the last 10 years, our relationship has grown that it’s just a matter of him physically being back in Europe, sticking our heads together, wrestling a bit and leaving the room with white smoke after a few hours.”
However, Hamilton now looks set to enter the 2023 season without putting pen to paper and it could well be a repeat of his last contract renewal, where he waited until the very last moment to commit.
Earlier this month, it was reported by Sportune that Hamilton was pushing for a hefty salary increase in his new deal, but Mercedes have dismissed these reports as “completely unfounded.”
It was also claimed that his new deal won’t feature a bonus for winning the world championship.