FormulaNerds Cut To The Race Podcast

Lewis Hamilton and Charles Leclerc in conversation post-race

Leclerc addresses Mercedes rumours as speculation persists

Leclerc's contract is up for renewal in 2024. What's the Ferrari driver's next move?

Latest Episode | Cut To The Race Podcast

Formula 1 is back, and so too are the rumours surrounding Charles Leclerc’s future in the sport.

Leclerc climbs out of the SF23 at the 2023 Australian Grand Prix
It’s been Leclerc’s worst start to an F1 season since his rookie year. (Image credit: PlanetF1) 

With the Ferrari driver’s contract up for renewal at the end of 2024, there’s plenty of interest in what Leclerc’s next career move will be. It’s a curiosity bolstered by Ferrari’s current lack of results and a – quite frankly – terrible start to the 2023 season for Leclerc. 

After Ferrari’s botched attempt at a championship last year, some fans are of the opinion that if Leclerc is to win a championship he ought to consider driving for a different team. With Leclerc’s poor season so far, it’d be understandable if the Monegasque has begun to shop around.

The latest rumour follows that Charles Leclerc has been doing exactly that. Recent reports from Leo Turrini stated that Leclerc has been in conversation with Mercedes. What’s more, it was alleged that these talks are something of an “open secret” within the paddock. 

Lewis Hamilton is yet to formally confirm a contract extension with Mercedes. The seven-time world champion’s contract is set to run out at the end of the year — a fact that’s serving only to further fuel the rumours.

Leclerc puts the rumours to rest

It’s not the first time Leclerc has had to deny such rumours. The Ferrari driver remains insistent that no such talks have taken place between himself and Mercedes.

“For now, I am fully focused on the project I am in today, which is Ferrari and I fully trust and am confident for the future,” Leclerc told media in Baku. “Then we will see, but I am fully confident for the project of Ferrari.” He added:

“I’m fully committed to Ferrari and I love Ferrari.”

Has he had a call from Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff? Leclerc was quick to deny that suggestion, too. “No. Zero. Zero. Really zero,” said Leclerc, before adding:

“You all smile because you don’t believe me, but I promise.”

Team principal Fred Vasseur reiterated Leclerc’s commitment to the team in a press conference ahead of the Azerbaijan Grand Prix, stating: “[Leclerc] is clearly part of the project. He is not a spectator. He is involved in the development of the team and part of the development because he’s developing himself.”

Vasseur stressed the importance of Leclerc’s role in the team. “For sure, Charles is an important pillar of the performance, and he has to play his role inside and outside of the car,” said the team principal. “He’s a performance contributor, both on track and off track, and as long as he plays this role, then we are on a good path.”

He added, “I am really convinced that it’s a personal commitment from his side.”

What about Lewis?

Talk of a potential move to Mercedes for Leclerc naturally concerns Lewis Hamilton’s future too. When asked whether the Leclerc rumours have impacted contract negotiations with Mercedes, Hamilton said: “No, not really.”

Elaborating on this, Hamilton said, “I like where I am, I love my team, and I’m grateful for the journey we’ve been on and what we’re working on moving forwards. So, it doesn’t have any impact, no.”

Featured Image Credit: PlanetF1

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Zeen is a next generation WordPress theme. It’s powerful, beautifully designed and comes with everything you need to engage your visitors and increase conversions.

Back to the top