Red Bull’s Helmut Marko has waded into the ongoing contract saga between Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes, suggesting the Briton may find it difficult to get the compensation he is asking for.
Having just re-signed his own driver Max Verstappen to a new three-year contract, Marko thinks the $66 million dollar number being tossed around in reports is indeed what Hamilton is asking for, but might be too much for the Silver Arrows.
“Lewis is a six-time world champion and very important for Mercedes in terms of both sport and marketing,” the 76-year-old told Auto Bild.
“I think that he is aware of his value and from there he pushes towards certain requests… [however] I believe that no team, not even Mercedes, will be willing to spend such sums on a driver. Or maybe only Ferrari.”
With his contract set to expire at the end of the 2020 season, Hamilton caused quite a ruckus in the F1 paddock late last year after reports emerged in the Italian press that he had had two meetings with Fiat boss John Elkann. If Marko is correct about his demands, the Scuderia could end up being his only suitor.