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Ferrari happy with chance to sign Hamilton

Ferrari happy with chance to sign Hamilton

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Ferrari happy with chance to sign Hamilton

Ferrari happy with chance to sign Hamilton

Ferrari team principal Mattia Binotto cheekily suggested that Lewis Hamilton's potential availability to sign for 2021 made the Scuderia happy.

Sat next to Hamilton's boss Toto Wolff in Friday's press conference at the Abu Dhabi GP, Binotto was asked if he would be interested in signing Hamilton, whose Mercedes deal expires at the end of next year.

Although Charles Leclerc is on a deal that is believed to run until 2022, Sebastian Vettel's contract, like Hamilton's, also expires in 2020

"Lewis is certainly an outstanding driver, a fantastic driver," Binotto said.

"Knowing that he's available in 2021 can make us only happy, but honestly it's too early for any decision. We are happy with the drivers we've got at the moment.

"Certainly at one stage next season we will start discussing and understanding what to do."

Despite regular links to Ferrari in his career, Hamilton has said he cannot envisage departing Mercedes, especially if Wolff remains in situ as team principal – the Austrian has been linked with potentially taking over F1.

With Hamilton having aligned his future to Wolff, the Silver Arrow chief said tentative thoughts had already turned to 2021.

"Lewis and I have grown close over the last seven years. We ended up in Mercedes at the same time in 2013 and I think we have built up a lot of trust.

"At the same time, the two of us are part of a wider organisation where everybody is playing in their relative field of competence. For him to say that is nice.

"I'd also like to know where he goes or if he stays in the future.

"We are having those discussions about the future and I think it is very important between the two of us, like between many others that have played an important role within that team.

"For me, it is important to finish the season in Abu Dhabi. There are many things to be decided on and we will see over the winter."

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