• McLaren news

Hamilton won't tolerate 'another barren year' - Horner

ESPNF1 Staff
March 15, 2011 « We are better on performance - Barrichello | »
Lewis Hamilton: how long will he wait for McLaren to get competitive © Sutton Images
Enlarge
Related Links

Red Bull boss Christian Horner has warned that Lewis Hamilton is unlikely to tolerate another season of failure at McLaren. Hamilton was frustrated in 2010 as McLaren failed to match either Ferrari or Red Bull, and the early indications are it could be another difficult year for the team.

While Horner was announcing Sebastian Vettel had signed a new deal with Red Bull taking him through to the end of the 2014 season, he could not resist a few comments about Hamilton.

"Lewis is a great driver," he said. "He's a former world champion. He's one of the best that there is. And he's not going to be happy if he has another barren year. But that's not to say that we're looking for [him] to come to our team. We're very happy with the two drivers that we currently have."

Hamilton also had an announcement - he has signed with a new agent, Simon Fuller, who handles other high-profile sportsmen such as David Beckham and Andy Murray - and the speculation was that McLaren has to come up with the goods in 2011 or he might be looking to move on.

With Fernando Alonso at Ferrari, a switch there is highly unlikely, which leaves Red Bull the favourite, especially given Mark Webber, who is on a year-by-year contract, is nearing the end of his career. The sticking points could be Hamilton's reported $15 million a year deal with McLaren - Vettel is believed to be on around $10 million - as well as his own loyalty to the team who signed him as a teenager.

Asked whether Red Bull could handle a Vettel-Hamilton combination, Horner said: "You would certainly envisage it being quite a busy partnership, but you can never rule it out. From my perspective you always want to have the best two drivers."

Close