McLaren 'make tentative Lewis Hamilton approach' according to reports
2015 transfer rumours underway concerning Hamilton and Alonso
By Sky Sports Online
Last Updated: 26/06/14 10:33am
Formula 1's 'silly season' has officially commenced amid fresh reports that McLaren have made a 'tentative' approach to Lewis Hamilton about a return to the team where his F1 career began.
Hamilton's current Mercedes team, who he joined from McLaren at the start of 2013 on a three-year contract, have been the class of the field in 2014 with the Briton and team-mate Nico Rosberg sharing all bar one of the races so far. However, unlike the German, Hamilton has suffered two retirements and finds himself trailing by 29 points in the Drivers’ Championship.
Tensions between the Mercedes pair have been heated since their public spat at the Monaco GP and both the Daily Mail and The Daily Telegraph report that losing out to Rosberg in the title fight could prove too much for Hamilton.
‘The team [McLaren] have opened very tentative dialogue with Lewis Hamilton, in case the psychological scars of this year’s title fight at Mercedes become too great,’ The Daily Telegraph reported.
‘The only circumstances in which Hamilton would leave Mercedes are if he lost out to Nico Rosberg for the drivers’ championship.’
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Those sentiments echo the thoughts of the Daily Mail’s Jonathan McEvoy after the Canadian GP: ‘There has been contact between McLaren and Lewis Hamilton about a possible return to the team that nurtured his genius.
'There are two possible reasons I can think of why Hamilton would want to return. The first is that Honda-powered McLaren have title-winning form.
‘The second hinges on how this season works out at Mercedes. If Hamilton were to lose the title to Rosberg, imagine the trauma that would accompany that outcome.’
A more realistic target could be Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso who is growing increasingly frustrated at Ferrari, but with limited years remaining in the sport, it is unclear whether the Spaniard would want to gamble on the performance of the Honda engine when they return to the sport next year.
‘Fernando Alonso, who left the team in acrimonious circumstances at the end of 2007 and has become disillusioned with life at Ferrari, seems the most likely candidate, although it remains to be seen whether the Spaniard can be persuaded to join for the first year of Honda engines in 2015,’ the Telegraph added.
It remains to be seen if McLaren would opt to replace Jenson Button, whose contract expires at the end of the season, or rookie Kevin Magnussen, who was part of McLaren’s young driver programme. Whilst age could count against Button, the 34-year-old has outraced the young Dane six-two so far this season.
Although Button admitted at the Canadian GP earlier this month that no progress had yet been made on a contract renewal, McLaren chief Eric Boullier has made clear that he expects the 2009 World Champion to stay with the team into a sixth season.
"Since I have joined McLaren I have found out what a great competitor he is and what a good asset he is for the team," Boullier told Sky Sports News. "I more and more appreciate what he can do. I'm very pleased and when the time comes to sit down then I would love to carry on with him.
"I expect him [to stay], but we haven't sat down properly yet."