He may be a six-time World Champion but Lewis Hamilton
won’t find a seat at Red Bull should he opt not to continue with Mercedes
beyond this season.
Red Bull team boss Christian Horner says the Brit doesn’t
“fit” the mould of a Red Bull driver.
Red Bull won’t consider Hamilton for 2021
Yet to commit his future to Mercedes, Hamilton is a free
agent at the end of this season, and Red Bull has an open seat for 2021.
Although the team has signed Max Verstappen to a
long-term deal, his 2021 team-mate is yet to be decided.
But it won’t be Hamilton.
“He wouldn’t fit into our programme,” Horner told Reuters.
“We have Max. We have always taken the policy if investing in young talent, nurturing and developing that talent.
“Lewis doesn’t fit into that.”
Expects Hamilton to re-sign with Mercedes
Hamilton need not worry about being unemployed next season as Horner believes it is only a matter of time before he re-signs with Mercedes.
The Brit and his team boss, Toto Wolff, will resume
contract negotiations in February.
Only two teams on the grid, Mercedes and Ferrari, are in
a financial position to meet Hamilton’s wage demands, reportedly over 40
million per season.
Horner doesn’t see the 35-year-old swapping from silver to red.
“Two of the major seats are now filled. Logic would say that he’ll remain in his current team if they can agree terms,” said the Brit.
“All the automotive sector have got financial pressure at the moment, so when there’s redundancies being made I guess it’s difficult to justify record-breaking salaries.
“I would assume it will be a normal commercial negotiation between the driver and his team.
“Ferrari could be a possibility for him, how much is difficult for me to gauge.
“He seems happy in the environment he’s in. If it’s the most competitive environment, why would he want to change that for the sake of driving in a different colour? So I don’t subscribe to that theory.”
Horner rules out Vettel returning
Hamilton’s not the only older driver on the grid that Red
Bull won’t even look at with Sebastian Vettel also on the list.
Although the German was the last driver – and the only
driver – to win World titles with Red Bull, he’s also on the frame.
Beaten by Charles Leclerc last season, rumours claim 2020
could be Vettel’s last at Ferrari, or even in Formula 1.
However, the rumour mill continues, if he chooses to stay in the sport with a different team, Red Bull could be an option.
Horner says no.
“It’s difficult to see how two alphas can fit in a team,” he said.
“You can see the problem that Ferrari have had. Why would it be any different at Red Bull with two alpha drivers?
“Same with Lewis at Ferrari or Lewis at Red Bull. That is a very difficult dynamic, especially in a tight competition.”