Jeddah Grand Prix: “Anything is possible” says Hamilton of a Verstappen move to Mercedes 

Verstappen has a contract at Red Bull until 2028 but has been talked of as a possible for Hamilton after relations soured between father Jos and team boss Christian Horner.

Published : Mar 07, 2024 19:39 IST , LONDON - 2 MINS READ

Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton before Jeddah practice
Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton before Jeddah practice | Photo Credit: REUTERS

Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton before Jeddah practice | Photo Credit: REUTERS

Lewis Hamilton has refused to rule out a Mercedes move for Max Verstappen, however unlikely it may sound, because his own decision to join Ferrari next season showed anything is possible.

Verstappen has a contract at Red Bull until 2028 but has been talked of as a possible replacement for the seven times Formula One world champion after relations soured between father Jos and embattled team boss Christian Horner.

“My move has shown that anything’s possible, and it’s going to be a really interesting next six months or so,” Hamilton told reporters ahead of Saturday’s Saudi Arabian Grand Prix.

ALSO READ | Any F1 team would want Max Verstappen, says George Russell

“I don’t have an extra scoop. I know that... I’m sure Max is on the list, but I’m pretty sure he’s tied up, and also, I couldn’t see why you would leave a car that is that good,” added the Briton.

Vestappen won 19 of 22 races last year on his way to a third successive title.

The 26-year-old started the new season in Bahrain with a dominant win from pole position with the fastest lap and leading from start to finish.

The build-up had been dominated by an investigation into allegations of misconduct against Horner by a female employee, which he denied and was cleared of.

Hamilton’s Mercedes team mate George Russell said on Wednesday he was sure any team would want Verstappen, whose contract is believed to include release clauses linked to other key members of the team.

Hamilton and Verstappen fought for the 2021 title in controversial circumstances with the Red Bull driver winning after a late change to the safety car procedures tilted the final race in his favour.

The Briton, who has not won a race since that 2021 season, said the past would not count against Verstappen.

“He’s a great driver. We spoke back then, and at that moment Max did what he had to do. It was nothing on him. It was the sport that let us down. That wasn’t his fault,” said Hamilton.

“In his position, I would have done exactly the same thing, so there are no issues there.”

Verstappen agreed that Hamilton’s move had changed the landscape.

“Nobody would have seen that Lewis would move to Ferrari,” he told reporters in Jeddah. “You never know in general life what happens, or comes to you, or happens around you or what might influence you.

“So you can never say 100% that that is how it is going to be... but I am very relaxed and very happy at the team and the performance is there, so there is no reason to leave.”

The champion also reiterated support for his father and said they were a team.

“It’s me, my dad and (manager) Raymond (Vermeulen) altogether. And that will always be like that,” he said.

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