Spielberg, July 3: Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes will continue their immensely successful partnership in Formula 1 beyond the ongoing season, with the reigning seven-time world champion signing a two-year contract that will keep him in F1 with the Silver Arrows until at least the end of 2023.
It is the second contract Hamilton has signed with Mercedes in six months, the Briton only putting pen to paper on his current one-year term a few weeks before pre-season testing began.
Both Hamilton and Mercedes Team Principal Toto Wolff were keen to avoid the contract saga dragging on again, so began talks much earlier and they were concluded within weeks before being announced on Saturday -- morning of the Austrian Grand Prix. Lewis Hamilton Promises to ‘Keep Pushing’ Ahead of Austrian GP 2021.
It means Hamilton will be just one week short of 39 years old when his new deal ends, having extended his stay at the Silver Arrows -- with whom he's won six of his seven titles -- to 11 years.
"It is hard to believe it's been nearly nine years working with this incredible team and I'm excited we're going to continue our partnership for two more years," said Hamilton in a release by F1. "We've accomplished so much together but we still have a lot to achieve, both on and off the track. I'm incredibly proud and grateful of how Mercedes has supported me in my drive to improve diversity and equality in our sport. They have held themselves accountable and made important strides in creating a more diverse team and inclusive environment."
Toto Wolff added, "As we enter a new era of F1 from 2022 onwards, there can be no better driver to have in our team than Lewis. His achievements in this sport speak for themselves, and with his experience, speed and race craft, he is at the peak of his powers. We are relishing the battle we have on our hands this year -- and that's why we also wanted to agree this contract early, so we have no distractions from the competition on track."
The identity of Hamilton's teammate remains unclear, but it is believed to be a call between incumbent Valtteri Bottas -- who has been with the team since 2017 -- and Mercedes junior George Russell, who has impressed with his performances at Williams.
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