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Lewis Hamilton: Ferrari have not offered a contract to Mercedes driver, says Frederic Vasseur ahead of Monaco GP

Lewis Hamilton was reportedly offered £40m to join Ferrari but the Italian outfit's team principal denies this; Hamilton has been with Mercedes since 2013 and his future has been a major talking point this month; watch the Monaco GP live on Sky Sports F1 this weekend

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Sky F1's Naomi Schiff is excited by the thought of seven-time world champion Lewis Hamilton potentially moving to Ferrari

Ferrari have not made a contract offer to Lewis Hamilton, team principal Frederic Vasseur says.

Earlier this week, it was reported Ferrari had made a £40m offer to Hamilton, with the seven-time world champion currently set to be a free agent for 2024 due to his Mercedes contract expiring at the end of this season.

Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz are both contracted to stay at Ferrari next year.

"As a joke I could say that two weeks ago you were sending Sainz to Audi, one week ago you sent Leclerc to Mercedes - now I am alone," said Vasseur ahead of this weekend's Monaco GP.

"You know perfectly that at this stage of the season each week you will have a different story and we are not sending an offer to Lewis Hamilton, we didn't do it."

Asked if he had talked with Hamilton, or would he, Vasseur answered: "We didn't have discussions. I think every single team on the grid would like to have Hamilton at one stage, it would be bull**** to not say something like this.

"If I discuss with Hamilton, the last 20 years I discussed almost every single weekend with Hamilton, I don't want to have to stop to discuss with him because you are chasing me."

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No talks with Leclerc and Sainz

Leclerc signed a five-year deal with Ferrari in 2019 while Sainz penned a new multi-year contract that also takes him through to the end of 2024.

Vasseur says he has not had to reassure his drivers about their futures at the team.

"Last week you sent them to Sauber, and Charles to Mercedes, they didn't come to see me and say - 'Fred don't worry it's not true'," he said.

"We know that each week we will have a new rumour and we are just focused on the car."

Ferrari drivers Charles Leclerc, left, and Carlos Sainz
Image: Ferrari drivers Charles Leclerc, left, and Carlos Sainz

Sainz also reiterated Vasseur's comments but admits he would like to confirm his future by early next season.

"I don't feel like I need to [talk with Vasseur about my future]," explained Sainz. "I know at this time of year there are always these kind of rumours. It's silly season time.

"A week-and-a-half ago I was going to Audi, one week ago Charles was going to Mercedes, now Lewis is coming to Ferrari. It's the story of our lives when it comes to this time of the year. I've been [in F1] long enough to know it's that time of year."

Ferrari focusing on the car

Ferrari challenged Red Bull in the first half of last year and led the championship early on, before their title challenge faded away due to a run of mistakes and reliability failures.

They are the only team other than Red Bull to take pole position, in Baku with Leclerc, and Vasseur says Ferrari are focusing on their car, rather than the future of their drivers.

"I told you last week or two weeks ago that the most important for us is to stay focused on the development in the current season," he said.

"In a couple of months we'll have the slot to discuss about the future, and it will be time to discuss.

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Craig Slater gives an update on rumours that Ferrari are looking to sign Lewis Hamilton

"I didn't want to discuss with them the extension and I haven't changed, I told my position that the most important thing is to try to do a step forward to be able to compete with Red Bull, and let's stay focused on this."

The Ferrari team boss added: "For us we agreed that we'll discuss about the contracts later on, and I don't want to change because we had rumours from someone that Lewis could come or Charles could go or Carlos could go, we are dealing with our job internally and I will stay focused on the plan."

Why would Hamilton leave now?

Hamilton is fourth in the drivers' championship after five races of the 2023 season, 63 points behind leader Max Verstappen, but 12 points and 22 points ahead of Ferrari's Sainz and Leclerc respectively.

Mercedes are also 18 points ahead of Ferrari in the constructors' championship, but the latter have had a pole position.

Sky Sports F1's Simon Lazenby questions why Hamilton would want to join a team that is currently further away from championship contention than he is at the moment.

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Sky F1's Simon Lazenby questions whether Lewis Hamilton might think his best chance of winning an eighth world title would be with Ferrari

"Having looked at the first five races of the season, I just think why would he bother moving at the moment?" he said.

"It's not like anybody else, apart from Aston Martin, have made gains. Christian Horner was saying post-race in Miami 'where are the others?'.

"I understand the lure of Ferrari, but when you look at them for the last 15 years they have been serial underachievers - they've been a team in constant transition. Whereas Mercedes have the pedigree, they made one philosophical mistake and now they're in transition - maybe that transition period will take last year, this year and they know they're already a year behind if these upgrades get them to the point where they're on a track that they can play development war with Red Bull from the start of next season.

"It's almost Hobson's choice for Lewis - why not stay with the team that brought you all that success rather than risk it just to say 'I was a Ferrari driver' for one point of your career when really they have a quick car on a Saturday and they don't on a Sunday."

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Sky F1's Ted Kravitz thinks Lewis Hamilton still believes he can win a record eighth world title in Formula 1

Sky Sports F1's live Monaco GP schedule

Friday May 26
10.05am: F3 Qualifying
12pm: Monaco GP Practice One (session starts 12.30pm)
2.05pm: F2 Qualifying
3.45pm: Monaco GP Practice Two (session starts 4pm)
5.30pm: The F1 Show: Monaco

Saturday May 27
9.55am: F3 Sprint
11.15am: Monaco GP Practice Three (session starts 11.30am)
1.30pm: F2 Sprint
2:30pm: Monaco GP Qualifying build-up
3pm: Monaco GP Qualifying
4.45pm: Ted's Qualifying Notebook

Sunday May 28
7.15am: F3 Feature Race
8.45am: F2 Feature Race
12.30pm: Grand Prix Sunday Monaco GP build-up
4pm: Chequered Flag Monaco GP reaction
5pm: Ted's Notebook
5.30pm: The 107th Indy 500

Formula 1 now heads to the streets of Monaco for the sixth Grand Prix of the 2023 season - watch all the action on Sky Sports F1 from May 26-28. Get Sky Sports

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