We’ve heard a lot of folks describe their thoughts on the possibility of Lewis Hamilton moving to Mercedes and while the traditional thought is centered on the money being offered as the catalyst, Sky Sports F1 man, Anthony Davidson, says he thinks it is deeper than just money.
“I’m not entirely convinced it comes down to financial reasons, I’m sure both teams are sufficiently funded to give him want he wants in that respect,” Davidson told Sky Sports News.
“But if Mercedes are offering something as a whole package that looks really good for the long term future, then maybe, just maybe that’s what is tempting him at this stage.
“I think both sides have time, McLaren and Mercedes, although they would like him to sign for them respectively as individual teams. But I think Lewis is probably in a pretty strong position right now.”
If Hamilton decided that the lure of a Mercedes package was a long-term future, there is certainly a risk involved. That risk is not unlike the one taken by Michael Schumacher when he left Benetton for Ferrari (or even Fernando Alonso for that matter) or Kimi Raikkonen to McLaren. Building a team around you and working with the team to develop a title-winning car is no easy task.
The first hurdle is joining a team with the resources to actually build and develop a car that could win and in that, perhaps Hamilton sees in Mercedes an operation that has that kind of resource allocation for their program. The question could be asked, is Hamilton the kind of driver that can build a team around him and help develop a car that can win?
Schumacher has always been a technical driver. Once asked what he would have done if he were not in Formula One, he said he would have been a mechanic. Alonso, too, understand the very technical aspect of a car and how to develop it but has Hamilton shown this kind of aptitude?
Many drivers would love the opportunity to have a team built around them and to be the focal point of their championship efforts. I’m really not sure why Hamilton wouldn’t feel that way at McLaren, with all due respect to Anthony Davidson, as he has been developed by their young driver program since the age of 13. If he were going to succeed anywhere, surely McLaren would be the place.