Lewis Hamilton Says There Are No Guarantees He will Race Again Next Season

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  • Lewis Hamilton says there is no guarantee he will return to F-1 next season.
  • Mercedes principal Toto Wolff claims that he and Hamilton are far from finished.
  • Hamilton can clinch his 7th world title at Istanbul on November 15th.

Lewis Hamilton celebrated his 93rd race win by taking part of Daniel Ricciardo’s shoey celebration. That surprised Ricciardo who said that three years ago, Hamilton said he would never drink champagne from someone’s sweaty race boots. But last Sunday was different.

While Ricciardo was doing his trademark celebration, Hamilton asked him to remove his other boot and proceeded to joining the Aussie’s shoey celebration. Hamilton said the drink tasted like “toe jam” and definitely didn’t taste good. However, he was happy because Ricciardo’s mom called him a good sport.

No Guarantee

But while Hamilton had a good time at the podium, he was more serious during the interviews. When he was asked about Toto Wolff changing roles in Mercedes next season, Hamilton hinted about his future:

“Naturally, I feel great, I feel very strong and I feel like I could keep going for plenty of months. But you mentioned about Toto and shelf life, so there are multiple things that do stay on my mind. I would like to be here next year, but there is no guarantee of that, for sure, and there is a lot that excites my about the ‘after’ life. Time will tell.”

Hamilton’s contract expires at the end of the year but it had been assumed that signing a new deal would be a formality. After all, as Wolff said last month, the world’s best driver and the world’s fastest car are a perfect match. But if Hamilton’s statement is to believed, that is not yet set in stone.

Wolff Says Hamilton Not Yet Finished

While Hamilton sounds unsure, Mercedes principal Toto Wolff has always maintained that he is confident that Hamilton will re-sign with Mercedes. As to Hamilton’s retirement claims, Wolff said that Hamilton was probably just caught up with the moment and the emotions.
Said Wolff:

“Like Niki Lauda in the 1970s, he could wake up one morning at the track and just say that he is not having fun anymore. I think that can happen to anybody. But we want to continue this journey and we are not finished. Lewis and I and the whole team know that we are not finished.”

Wolff and Hamilton both joined Mercedes in 2013 and the two have enjoyed unprecedented success. The Silver Arrows clinched their 7th constructor’s title last weekend. Hamilton is on the verge of his 7th world title, and his sixth with Mercedes. The team has won 11 of the 13 races this season with Hamilton taking nine of those. The champion is only 35 and is clearly at the peak of his powers. Mercedes has won every world title in the V6 Turbo Engine era. Clearly, neither of them are done.

Can Clinch Title in Istanbul

Business brings Hamilton, Wolff, and Mercedes to Turkey’s Istanbul Park on November 15, 2020 for the Turkish Grand Prix. The race will mark the return of the race to the Formula One calendar as the 14th race of the truncated 2020 season. It was a fixture in the Formula One calendar from 2005 to 2011 before being pulled in 2012 due to a lack of agreement on the annual cost.

Hamilton is currently listed as a -250 betting favorite by online sportsbook Bet365 with Bottas in second place at +350. Red Bull’s Max Verstappen is third at +500 while Daniel Ricciardo is already a longshot in fourth place at +6600. The only other current drivers to win in Istanbul are Sebastian Vettel (+50000) and Kimi Raikkonen (+300000). Bottas needs to outpoint Hamilton by at least 8 points to extend the title fight to the next race in Bahrain. Meanwhile, Hamilton will only need to finish ahead of Bottas to officially bag his 7th title

This race is a crucial one because Hamilton will have his first crack at clinching a record-tying 7th Formula One world title in Istanbul. The sooner he puts the title in the bag, the better it will be for Hamilton and Mercedes. There are still three races left in the season after the Turkish Grand Prix, and with the pressure off, he should have more quality time to think about his racing future.

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