Steiner on Hamilton's F1 future: 'Where could he go?'

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Haas boss Guenther Steiner chimed in on the debate over Lewis Hamilton's F1 future, insisting the seven-time world champion only has two options for 2024: remain with Mercedes or retire from the sport.

So far, despite Mercedes' performance slump since last season, Hamilton has given every indication that he will be on the grid with the Brackley squad in 2024.

"But until a firm contract is signed and sealed between the Briton and his team, the speculation regarding his future will continue to linger.

With no opportunities currently available at either Red Bull, Ferrari or even Aston Martin for 2024,
Steiner doesn't believe that Hamilton has much of a choice if he wishes to keep on racing at the pinnacle of motorsport next season. Mercedes will remain his home.

"Where could he go? Honestly, I don't know," Steiner told the Mail on Sunday.

"Red Bull have put everything on Max [Verstappen]. Max is their man. Why would they now change Max for Lewis?

"It would be entertaining! But when you're running a team, you don't want to entertain. You want to entertain yourself of being World Champion.

"I'm not doubting Lewis' capability but I don't see it, because the other top three [teams] are not looking at Lewis."

While Mercedes has undeniably progressed this season, a return to the unwavering success it enjoyed for eight seasons in F1 is likely still a long way off.

But Steiner views the German outfit's current downswing as part of its normal cycle, as winning periods can't last forever. And the same goes for Hamilton.

"Your team cannot always just win. Formula 1 is not Formula Mercedes! Mercedes had eight good years and nothing is forever, as we all know," he explained.

"Being surprised or not accepting that you go backwards is something I find very strange.

"You need to regroup and try again, but you cannot expect or demand to be [the best] – 'because we won it eight times now we are going to win it nine times'.

"And the same for Lewis, [who] spent eight years in the best or one of the best cars and won championships.

"You cannot always win, and also [he] lost the [2016] Championship to teammate [Nico Rosberg] as well in that time. Your team cannot always win."

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