In a stunning twist of events, Lewis Hamilton has made a surprise move by joining the Scuderia Ferrari F1 team for the upcoming 2025 season. Speculations had been rife in the days leading up to the official declaration, and it appears that the swirling rumours have indeed materialized. This unexpected decision comes on the heels of Hamilton’s recent two-year contract extension with Mercedes, where he played a pivotal role in the development of the 2024-spec Mercedes F1 challenger.
According to multiple sources, Hamilton’s current contract with Mercedes includes an early release clause. Hamilton has dedicated significant time at the Mercedes F1 factory in Brackley, Northampton, immersing himself in the development of the team’s 2024 challenger. Hamilton expressed his sentiment that the 2023 car followed the wrong development path leading to a largely unforgettable and winless season.
For Hamilton to activate the early release clause shortly after committing to a two-year contract extension suggests his belief in the team to deliver a race-winning car has weakened during the winter development campaign. Discerning the exact reasons behind Hamilton’s departure from Mercedes is complex; it could be as straightforward as his desire to join Ferrari in the latter stages of his glittering career.
Certainly, there will be a plethora of interviews and soundbites to analyse, but securing Lewis Hamilton is a monumental acquisition for any team, and none loom larger than Ferrari. They are poised to compensate him generously, aligning with his stature as one of the preeminent Formula 1 drivers of all time.
Hamilton and Mercedes are intertwined, since 2013 he has been an integral part of the Silver Arrows team. Together they have secured six drivers’ championships and eight constructors’ titles. The reversion to ground effect era regulations in 2022 has led to a notable decline in Mercedes’ performance from their once-dominant position.