Charlie’s Chatter

  • Lewis Hamilton is set to sign a three-year contract extension with Mercedes following Sebastian Vettel’s Ferrari renewal, according to the Mail on Sunday. I guess that puts the Vettel to Mercedes and Hamilton to Ferrari rumours to rest.
  • Niki Laudi has hinted at Mercedes treating Lewis Hamilton as a clear ‘Number 1’ driver. “I know exactly what we need to do. Bottas did not have a strong weekend at Spa so it is already clear that Lewis has a better chance for the championship. If Lewis had not given away those three points in Budapest, he would now be only four points behind Vettel.”
  • Have the Force India drivers made happy after their dust up in Belgium? Also, what’s with the blue jean Esteban?
  • Sauber is expected to make a decision on their 2018 driver line-up in the next couple of weeks with engine suppliers Ferrari part of the discussions. Word has it Ferrari will be pushing young Charles Leclerc on the Swiss team.
  • Honda said there was “nothing showing” in Fernando Alonso’s data despite the driver retiring from the Belgian Grand Prix. Did Alonso retire the car in a fit of frustration? Not a good look for the Spaniard.
  • Fernando Alonso says he will only sign a new McLaren contract if they part ways with engine supplier Honda.¬†McLaren are now focused on making the switch from Honda to Renault’s power unit.
  • Speaking of Honda…staff writer Rob O’Brien is reporting that Red Bull may engage Honda as an engine supplier for Toro Rosso. If all goes according to plan, and Honda shows improvement, the top Red Bull team could then make the jump from Renault to Honda.
  • Renault adviser and brand ambassador Alain Prost personally apologised to Max Verstappen for the Red Bull driver’s engine failure at last weekend’s Belgian Grand Prix.
  • Max Verstappen’s dad, Jos, says he and his son are starting to question whether Red Bull can turn around their situation with Renault engine problems.

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