Ferrari make difficult Lewis Hamilton decision as contract clause comes back to bite Brit | F1 | Sport

Lewis Hamilton will reportedly not be bringing race engineer and close ally Peter Bonnington to Ferrari due to a non-poaching clause in his existing Mercedes contract. Instead, the Brit will be teaming up with Riccardo Adami, who has worked with Carlos Sainz since he joined the Scuderia from McLaren.

Hamilton and Bonnington – more commonly referred to as ‘Bono’ – have forged a legendary partnership during their time at Mercedes with the 49-year-old guiding the British driver to six Drivers’ Championship titles with the Silver Arrows. 

Mercedes boss Toto Wolff addressed the possibility of Bonnington joining the Scuderia after the news of Hamilton’s move was announced. “I think this is a discussion which everyone needs to have in the months to come,” he said. 

“And as much as I’ve spoken with Bono already, when I told him [about the move] he said, ‘Is it April the first?’ That’s something which we will discuss in the future.”

However, the iconic pairing will be no more after the end of the 2024 campaign. According to a report from Italian news outlet Analisi Tecnica, the non-poaching clause in his Mercedes contract, which was signed partway through the 2023 season, has prevented Ferrari from luring Bonnington from Brackley to Maranello.

Adami found himself in the role initially after a similar contract clause prevented four-time world champion Sebastian Vettel from bringing Guillaume ‘Rocky’ Rocquelin with him from Red Bull in 2015. Since then, he has impressed the Ferrari leadership with his work alongside the legendary German and more recently with Sainz.

While Hamilton will no doubt be emotional when his long-standing partnership with Bonnington comes to an end after the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, the report states that the 39-year-old is relishing the opportunity to work with Adami. 

There is plenty of intrigue within the community about how a superstar of Hamilton’s stature will adapt to life as a Ferrari driver. This speculation is increased by the fact that the Brit has been driving with Mercedes for 12 seasons and that his two teams thus far have been based in his native United Kingdom.

Language will also be a barrier for the Brit. “In all these years I’ve not managed to learn any other languages, but of course, I’ll definitely try,” he said. “I do remember when I was karting in Italy and I was able to pick up a few lines and so hopefully that will come back to me pretty quickly.”

Source link

Leave a Reply

Back To Top