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Hamilton admits he was ‘never really close’ to Ferrari move

James Pavey

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Thursday 19th November, 2020 - 12:23pm

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Lewis Hamilton

Formula 1 world champion Lewis Hamilton has revealed he was “never really close” to joining Ferrari.

Speculation about a possible Hamilton switch from Mercedes to Maranello arose in the latter stages of the 2019 season, and carried on for several months this year.

However, that was finally quashed when Ferrari signed Carlos Sainz to join Charles Leclerc, who is locked in to the team until 2024.

Last weekend, Hamilton clinched a record-equalling seventh Formula 1 world championship after winning the Turkish Grand Prix.

There are just three races remaining in the 2020 season, and under his current contract, they will be Hamilton’s last with Mercedes.

Immediately after the Turkish race, which was Hamilton’s 94th win, he said he was in “no rush” to ink a new deal with the Silver Arrows.

Speaking to La Gazzetta dello Sport, Hamilton said he and Ferrari “never aligned” in previous talks.

“We were never really close,” Hamilton said.

“We talked on occasion but we didn’t go beyond understanding what options were on the table and they weren’t the right ones.

“Our positions have never aligned. I think timing matters and things happen in the end for a reason.

“In recent seasons my contract always expired in years different from that of all the other drivers. In the end it went like this.”

In May, Hamilton addressed questioning about the possible move to Ferrari by describing the experience of winning with the Scuderia as a “short-term kind of thing”.

“If you look at all drivers who have driven for Ferrari, obviously it’s an incredible team and obviously the car’s always beautiful red. I have got red on my helmet. Red is the colour of passion or love or whatever you want say,” the 35-year-old said.

“But what Mercedes have done for all their drivers – even Sir Stirling Moss was still a part of the team – they honour that and you become a part of a legacy and a life-long partner, which I think is super appealing.”

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