New Mercedes deal 'probably' a formality for Hamilton

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Lewis Hamilton says a new contract at Mercedes is "probably" a formality, but still isn't in a rush to confirm it.

This year's silly season is quite a bit later than usual, as Covid-19 and the hectic nature of the revised 2020 Formula 1 calendar has pushed back a lot of driver moves which are usually completed around the August summer break.

That is something Hamilton and Mercedes have alluded to when it comes to securing the Briton's future.

But still, with each day that passes without a new deal being signed, it does raise more questions as to why Lewis is letting at least the external uncertainty linger.

"Not particularly anything, just haven’t really spoken much about it,” he said on if there was a reason for the delay at Portimao on Thursday.

“[Is it] a formality, I don’t know - probably. I guess at some stage we have to sit down and have the conversation but it’s not a priority right now, getting the job done for me this year personally is the priority. That’s what I’m solely focused on right now.”

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With a 69-point lead in the championship and only six races left, the pressure isn't exactly on Hamilton in that regard.

Even so, he admits going through the motions of drawing up a new contract can be stressful.

“Negotiations are never an easy thing for most people, having to go into an office and sit with your boss, it’s never an easy position to be in,” he said. 

“I don’t particularly feel uneasy about it, I’ve done it multiple times now. It’s just when the time is right, we’ll do and get on with it.

"At the end of the day, I’ve always been committed to this team and completely transparent," he added.

“I know if you don’t have communication for a while, people can start to hear whispers or have a fear… I could for example worry that Toto is speaking to somebody else which is silly, I don’t think that. I’m just saying that’s what humans can do.

“So, it’s always been important just to be really clear with each other about our intentions. I haven’t spoken to anybody else, I don’t plan to and at some stage, Toto and I will sit down and work out our path moving forwards.

“We have achieved quite a lot together and it’s quite remarkable what we’ve done together over these years and we are still not done.”

Turning 36 in January, Hamilton will be the third oldest driver on the grid next season, and as he gets older, Lewis admits there are new things he has to factor into a new deal.

“I haven’t made any decisions but I do want to stay,” he explained. “Normally when we sit down it’s been three-year periods.

“But of course we are in a different time. Do I want to continue for three years is also a question. There are many, many questions still to be answered.

"We’re also going into a new era of car in 2022. So it kind of excites me what could happen in 2022 in terms of what the cars are like.

“These are all things that we will naturally think about but I think I’ve earned the right or the position so far to be able to stay for a decent amount of time, so time will tell.

"I can’t really say too much more, hopefully, you’ll hear something in the next couple of months.”