Going into his home race at Silverstone, Lewis Hamilton is in a less-than-ideal situation for any potential title challenge. He is currently 98 points behind the championship leader, Max Verstappen. If Lewis Hamilton fails to win in Silverstone, it means that he would have gone 10 races without a win, for the first time in his career.
For the vast majority of his career, Lewis Hamilton has had a car that could at the very least compete for the world title. He was only beaten twice in the hybrid era, once by teammate Nico Rosberg in 2016 and the other time by Max Verstappen in 2021. Both times Hamilton finished second, losing out only narrowly.
But with the advent of the 2022 season, Hamilton was presented with what would perhaps have been an unprecedented situation for him in quite some time. The car was not competitive enough to race for the win and has been far behind Red Bull and Ferrari on most tracks, even though pristine reliability has helped them get better results than perhaps what their pace had warranted.
Moreover, Hamilton has been comprehensively beaten by his teammate, George Russell, who is currently 34 points ahead. Montreal was only the second time in the whole season that Hamilton finished ahead of his teammate. In such a situation, former F1 CEO, Bernie Ecclestone, feels that Lewis Hamilton may likely retire soon.
Bernie Ecclestone feels that Toto Wolff ‘is getting fed up’ with Lewis Hamilton
As reported by Crash, Bernie Ecclestone is generally not very pleased with Lewis Hamilton and gave his opinion on the Briton’s form and future. Talking to the Daily Mail, he called Hamilton’s injury claims “b*******” and also said that Lewis Hamilton may make a ‘deal’ with Mercedes to retire.
“Lewis might sell his position to Toto [Wolff, Mercedes’ team principal].” adding on what he felt Hamilton’s thought process may be like: “This is how much I am getting, I’ll step down and give me half of what I would get. Toto can go and do one of his magic deals, offer someone less money and keep £20m.”
“Nobody needs to tell Toto this because he has already thought of it. Lewis would probably stop under those circumstances.” Ecclestone was also annoyed with Hamilton’s fashion choices: “I don’t know what he is doing dressing up in all those funny clothes. Has he a deal to it? Is it to get noticed? Maybe that’s it.”
Ecclestone was impressed with Lewis Hamilton’s teammate, George Russell, and admitted that the young driver had done better than he had expected of him.
“I didn’t think he was that good but he has done an excellent job. I’m surprised. Or is it a case of Lewis doing a bad job? A bit of both.”
Ecclestone also felt that Lewis Hamilton’s attitude was unlike him: “Toto is getting a bit fed up with Lewis. I don’t think he’s trying, do you? Let’s put it another way, Lewis doesn’t seem bothered about losing. It’s not like him. He has a competitive nature but he’s taking losing a bit easy for my liking.”
Lewis Hamilton, on the other hand, has said that he hopes to fight for victory in Silverstone, and with the possibility of a good upgrade package for the Silver Arrows, it’s certainly a possibility, if not a probability. It’s possible that for the first time this season that three teams may compete for pole position and victory.