Mercedes is having a start to the season like it has never experienced since its golden era in Formula 1 began in 2014, with a single-seater that has not yet found the configuration to rival Ferrari and Red Bull.
This start has been particularly difficult for Hamilton when compared to team-mate George Russell, as the Brackley newcomer has finished ahead of the seven-time champion in two of the three races so far, and is second in the championship.
Mika Hakkinen , two-time Formula 1 world champion, analyzed the current situation that Hamilton is experiencing, and what this may mean for the Briton’s future within the team with which he won six titles.
“It’s a tough place for Lewis [Hamilton], it’s obvious,” the Finn said in a special video for Unibet . “Russell did not come to be number two or to lose, he is there to give his best and (is) working to be world champion one day.
“He’s not going to bow down to a seven-time champion,” Hakkinen continued. “The last race in Australia was very tough for Lewis. The team naturally wants the drivers to finish, and they got the result, not the one they expected, but it was still good points for Mercedes.
“I’m sure Lewis is still upset about the situation. It’s hard to be beaten by George, I’m afraid this will be a really tough season for him,” explained the Finn.
Hakkinen believes that considering Russell is coming off three years at Williams without a car to challenge for top positions, whatever he can achieve will be welcome for him, while it is very different for Hamilton, who boasts 103 wins and pole positions. , and 183 podiums in Formula 1.
“It’s already difficult for Mercedes, but especially for Lewis,” insisted the former McLaren driver. “George comes from a team with little or no success, he had some good results in qualifying, but not in the races. All these achievements with Mercedes are new for him, everything feels super good. For Lewis, this is a disaster and, with George ahead, it’s even worse.”
With his experience of having competed in the Grand Circus for 11 years, in which he had many difficult moments despite his two titles, 20 wins and 51 podiums, Hakkinen is curious about the attitude that Hamilton may now have within Mercedes.
“I wonder how Lewis behaves in team meetings,” reflected the Finn. “I bet he’s mad, I can imagine! Lots of complaining and whining.”
Hamilton arrived at Mercedes in the 2013 season, and last year he signed a new contract that links him until the end of 2023. However, Hakkinen believes that the current situation will lead the seven-time champion to analyze a change of scenery: “This starts the pilots’ natural thought process: ‘Should I go somewhere else?'”
“It is a fact. He has been at Mercedes for years and has won multiple championships, now that things are not going well, he will start thinking about changing teams.”