Hamilton joins Mercedes for 2013 after McLaren exit

2013 F1 season

Lewis Hamilton, McLaren, Monza, 2012Lewis Hamilton has confirmed his move to Mercedes in 2013.

Hamilton has signed a three-year deal with the team and will take the place of Michael Schumacher, whose future plans are yet to be announced.

Hamilton said: “It is now time for me to take on a fresh challenge and I am very excited to begin a new chapter racing for the Mercedes AMG Petronas Formula One Team. Mercedes-Benz has such an incredible heritage in motorsport, along with a passion for winning which I share.

“Together, we can grow and rise to this new challenge. I believe that I can help steer the Silver Arrows to the top and achieve our joint ambitions of winning the world championships.”

Team principal Ross Brawn said: “The arrival of a driver of Lewis’ calibre is a testament to the standing of Mercedes-Benz in Formula One and I am proud that Lewis shares our vision and ambition for the success of the Silver Arrows.

“I believe that the combination of Lewis and Nico will be the most dynamic and exciting pairing on the grid next year, and I am looking forward to what we can achieve together.

“Over the past three years, we have been putting in place the foundations and building blocks that are needed to compete regularly for the world championship. Behind the scenes, we have assembled a team that is technically stronger, more experienced and better resourced, thanks to the support of Petronas and all of our loyal team partners.

“The potential is now there to match any other team on the grid, which is the minimum standard for a Mercedes-Benz works team. Our task is now to translate that potential into on-track performance for next season and beyond.”

Brawn thanks Schumacher for “important contribution”

Brawn praised his departing driver, saying: “On behalf of Mercedes AMG Petronas, I would first of all like to thank Michael Schumacher for the important contribution he has made to the growth of our team over the past three seasons.

“His energy and commitment have never wavered, even when results have not matched our own expectations, and we are determined to finish the 2012 season together on a high. As always, it has been a pleasure to work with Michael.”

Schumacher added: “I have had three nice years with the team which unfortunately did not go as well as we all would have wanted on the sporting side.

“I wish Lewis well and for the team to achieve the success we worked so hard for in the build-up. I would like to thank the team for their trust and all the guys for their unconditional commitment. I will now concentrate on the next races.”

Mercedes also announced three-times world champion Niki Lauda would join them as a non-executive chairman of the team’s board of directors.

2013 F1 season


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211 comments on Hamilton joins Mercedes for 2013 after McLaren exit

  1. Red Andy (@red-andy) said on 28th September 2012, 10:42

    Congratulation$ to Lewi$ in taking thi$ deci$ion, for $porting rea$on$ only, of cour$e.

    • And you would always turn down a multi-million pound increase in your income, of course. On your righteous high-horse and your moral crusade.

      Lol, I’d like to see what kind of job you’d be offered at Mercedes Benz and how much of an increase in salary you’d be offered…

      I do not begrudge any driver (or sportsperson or anyone come to that) taking a massive paycheck as and when it arrives. Their reasons for doing so may be questionable, if at all that is. But it’s got nothing to do with anyone else. Just like your salary (and why or why not you get it) has nothing to do with me.

  2. Switchbacker (@switchbacker) said on 28th September 2012, 10:43

    Lewis is obviously not happy at McLaren, that is surely the real reason, not just the mney. Although reducing his deal when he is at the peak of his career (perso I think he’s far and away the best driver, even acknowledging Alonso’s huge talent).

    McLaren have consistently mismanaged Lewis on and off track, and they dont deserve to have him. With Dennis it worked, with Whitmarsh it doesnt.

    Just hope Mercedes deliver a great car in 2014 and on so Lewis can get his career back on track.

    • @switchbacker It honestly feels like a lose-lose situation right now. Mclaren have let go the best driver they have had since Senna, and Lewis has left a top notch team for a team that is more likely to struggle than succeed.

      • Switchbacker (@switchbacker) said on 28th September 2012, 11:41

        Yep I agree, just hope Lewis gets a break and Mercedes deliver a car.

        Its been tough to watch Lewis talent being wasted, would be great to see him smiling and full of confidence again, with a team mate that he is happy with, and a boss that doesnt undermine him.

        • Keith Collantine (@keithcollantine) said on 28th September 2012, 12:39

          @switchbacker

          Its been tough to watch Lewis talent being wasted

          McLaren certainly screwed up earlier this year with all manner of mistakes in the pits.

          But it’s not all on them. Hamilton did a perfectly good job of wasting his own talent last year.

          a boss that doesnt undermine him.

          When did Whitmarsh “undermine” Hamilton?

          • Switchbacker (@switchbacker) said on 28th September 2012, 13:01

            (@keithcollantine

            But it’s not all on them. Hamilton did a perfectly good job of wasting his own talent last year.

            I maybe worded it too strongly, but I dont see how Lewis can be seen as anything but a huge asset to any team, and of all the factors involved in not achievening success its surely lack of a good car and significant strategy or operational effectiveness that are the main ones, not any on track tangles or post race commenst Lewis may have had.

            When did Whitmarsh “undermine” Hamilton?

            Telling him to lie to stewards in an incredibly disingenuous scam is pretty serious in my book, and an approach towards him that to me doesnt seem commensurate with his status as imho the best in the world by a distance.

            To see him buzzing again in a strong Merc, with none of this baggage, would be great for F1 thats for sure.

          • Optimaximal (@optimaximal) said on 28th September 2012, 15:52

            Is there any proof that Martin Whitmarsh told Hamilton to lie to the stewards?

            Surely that was between the driver and his race engineer, hence said race engineer being sacked shortly afterwards?

      • OOliver said on 28th September 2012, 12:40

        Yes it really is sad that it came to this. But the handwriting was on the wall a long time ago that Hamilton was slowly being edged out of Mclaren, but no one wanted to believe it.
        You can’t drive for a team when the team boss really doesn’t want you in there.

  3. This is a great move for Hamilton! I can see himself and Britney having long chats in the motorhome about man bags, skinny jeans and ear rings :P I can see Nicole getting jealous :)
    Seriously though, I’m more excited to see Checo in McLaren, he definitely should be competing for the championship next year..

    I wonder if he’ll score more points than Hamilton?? That’d really make Hamilton think about his decision..

  4. Dafffid (@dafffid) said on 28th September 2012, 10:59

    So, with Ferrari confirmed as a one driver team for the foreseeable future and Sauber with a space for next year…
    Happy People: Alonso, Massa, Vettel
    Unhappy People: Rosberg, Di Resta, Hulkenberg… Schumacher obviously
    Nervous People: Button, Hamilton
    Hopeful People: Sutil, Alguersauri, Buemi
    Deluded People: Heidfeld (sorry Nick, you can’t have the seat for a third time), Villeneuve (probably)

    Unless Massa gets the boot in which case, Di Resta and Hulkenberg might still be hopeful

  5. hamster said on 28th September 2012, 10:59

    I hope LH has moved for the challenge of building Mercedes, its an obvious thing to tick off a list once you’ve got into F1 and won a championship enablin gyou to win more championships along the way.

    Equally he may have done it for the money (as the less than aerodite comment above note$), we won’t know for a few years yet.

    In the end if its the money then I’d be disappointed but LH doesn’t know me, doesn’t owe me anything and doesn’t have to justify his choices to me; same as its my choice who I support or don’t support.

    It will be great to see what happens next!

    • £££££££££££££££££££££££££.that is all

      • Yeah, im sure when Lewis is 50 years old he’ll be more pleased with having an extra couple of mill in the bank and being just a single WDC winner…

        You people are delusional if you think hes moved on the basis of more money.

        F1 drivers spend their waking minute working towards and hoping to become a legend of the sport, not about moving up the sunday-times rich list.

  6. Tifoso1989 (@tifoso1989) said on 28th September 2012, 11:01

    Eddie Jordan chapeauuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuu

  7. perez world champ next year!!!

  8. I guess that all this means is that Mercedes has to build a race winning car in the next few years.

    I cannot see the bosses in Stutgart continuing to pay for an F1 team if they don’t.

  9. were is algusuari at next year he was saying on twitter that he had a drive

  10. On the business side, this is a brilliant move. At the moment in my college we’re studying how a football player can generate revenue/sponsorship by moving clubs, and I think the same applies here. Bernie surely does as well. Mercedes is one of the biggest car brands in the world, and Hamilton already one of the sport’s most recognisable drivers. With XIX management behind him, this is an opportunity for him to be turned into a global superstar.
    On the sporting side… I’m not sure. McLaren are consistently able to create frontrunning cars, and moving to Mercedes puts Lewis at risk of being thrown into the midfield, and we know how much he hates that. Still, overall I think the move is a good thing, because we’ll be going into the 2013 season not having a clue how one of the best drivers on the grid is going to perform!

  11. bad news for Nico Rosberg

  12. Timothy Katz (@timothykatz) said on 28th September 2012, 11:30

    Does this mean that Button is confirmed as ‘Number 1 driver’?

  13. Prisoner Monkeys (@prisoner-monkeys) said on 28th September 2012, 11:37

    I’m stunned at the number of people who think Hamilton is only moving for the money. Sure, Mercedes are struggling right now, and Hamilton would have to be acutely aware of that. It stands to reason that convincing him that 2013 will be bigger ans better would be the first thing the team did.

    • James (@goodyear92) said on 28th September 2012, 13:05

      I agree, it really is shocking what some people choose to believe. It’s even more so when you consider that McLaren actually matched his offer from Mercedes, but it still wasn’t enough to retain his services. His decision obviously stems from a desire to start anew; to see if a fresh enviroment will improve his chances and his performance (although, that has been great this year). I’m sceptical myself, but will continue to support him regardless. I hope Mercedes can at least deliver a car within shouting distance of the guys towards the front, and that this new challenge will succeed in motivating him further; drive him to more success.

  14. Perez not a pace setter in my opinion and the biggest loser in all of these is McLaren. To compete against Vettel and Alonso in terms of raw speed and race craft you need Hamilton. Mercedes is biggest winner if only the luxury brand remains in F1 as long as it’s required. The Brackley team has got now all the ingredients that need to win championships.

    • @sainaa . I think both Lewis and Mclaren have lost out by ending the partnership. Mclaren lost the world class driver that can deliver championships and compete with the other 2 big dogs (Vettel and Alonso). Lewis lost out on the team that has the fastest car on the grid currently, and which will most probably have the fastest car next year as well.

      As an Alonso fan I have to be happy with this news, as it seems that Alonso’s fiercest rival wont be challenging him next year for the title. Beating Jenson should be a walk in the park for Alonso.

      Checo is yet an unknown variable

      • panache (@panache) said on 29th September 2012, 2:36

        You are one of Buttons biggest detractors on this site and give no credence to his achievements. I don’t understand why.

        Why should beating Button be a walk in the park for Alonso considering that in his only season at Mclaren, he tied on points with a rookie Hamilton whilst Button managed to come close in 2010 then beat him in 2011?

        Over the entire duration of their partnership at Mclaren, Hamilton has 1 more win, literally a handful more points to his name and it’s currently 1-1 in terms of which driver ends each season with more points.

        The only statistic where Hamilton dominates is qualifying, which actually suggests that he is worse in races than Button considering how closely matched they are on points and wins.

    • Charlie boy said on 28th September 2012, 12:21

      I agree Button and Perez line up does not excite me as a McLaren fan. It going to be that oh we have race pace but no qually pace thing allover again. Whitmarsh is taking McLaren backwards and I dont see a WDC coming out of McLaren without a huge car advantage. WCC looks more likely.Then again I have never seen Perez of Button really overtake without a huge tire or car advantage.

      • Optimaximal (@optimaximal) said on 28th September 2012, 16:05

        What the hell?

        Surely race pace is where the points are won – who cares if a driver can get on the front of the grid if they’re just going to end up at the back?

        • Charlie boy said on 28th September 2012, 20:39

          What’s point in looking after tires and having decent pace if you stuck in middle of grid,

          As I said without a significant Ada antage I’ve not seen either driver pull off overtakes.

          Point won on Sunday but to say qually not important is a bit short sighted

  15. Steven Baker said on 28th September 2012, 11:49

    All Lewis did was trade one team that couldn’t win a championship for another for more $. As a McLaren and Lewis fan, I have to say both have not lived up to potential the last few years, maybe it was a time for a change. Go Sergio!

  16. I don’t understand why Perez has been praised as an absolute proven winner. He’s good at managing the tires but that does not mean he’s the pace setter. Hamilton is the one who takes on Vettel and Alonso. McLaren is no longer title contender after Lewis.

    • AndrewTanner (@andrewtanner) said on 29th September 2012, 17:46

      @sainaa Rubbish. How do you expect Perez could have done battle with those guys consistently in a car that isn’t as good as them? When Perez had the chance he took the fight to Alonso and beat him at Monza and came very close in Malaysia too. Likelihood is that in a more competitive car he will be able to do that more often than he does now.

  17. Charlie boy said on 28th September 2012, 12:10

    I think Hammy joining Mercedes may have just kept them in the sport. Maybe some more fans will respect him now he has joined a midfield team. Hope he along with Brawn can make this team a real contender and get Hamilton so well deserved respect from people that hate him for being ‘gifted’ his McLaren drive and world championship.

  18. Drop Valencia! said on 28th September 2012, 12:10

    Mclaren will go the way of Williams…………..

  19. Ben (@benchuiii) said on 28th September 2012, 12:18

    Hamilton’s either the next MSC or the next JV

  20. james2488 (@james2488) said on 28th September 2012, 12:20

    Im not saying that this is the perfect move for lewis but he does get what he really wants and that is more money, Mercedes have gone backwards in the past two years and i would say they are the 6th best team this year, therefore i really doubt they can win races next season, unless ross brawn has something we dont know which i doubt, at the end of the day lewis will be in a midfield team finishing at best around 3rd which hopefully he wont moan about to much, however this move has seen potentially one of the most exicting moves in years, perez has the potential to be world champion and lets hope he has a go next year, i normally support the british drivers but perez may get my support next year

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