5 possible replacements for Lewis Hamilton

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes, Formula 1 (Photo by Bryn Lennon / Getty Images)

Ever since Lewis Hamilton lost the Formula 1 World Championship to Max Verstappen amidst much controversy, there have been rumors that he has given up racing altogether.

We are less than two weeks away from the thrilling but controversial Abu Dhabi Grand Prix victory over Lewis Hamilton. Both drivers entered the last race of the 2021 Formula 1 season tied for the top of the drivers’ standings, which had only happened once before in Formula 1 history, and they had won 17 of the first 21 races of the season.

Verstappen chased his rival for most of the day until a late safety car brought the field back for a final lap of the race. Savvy decision making by Red Bull, combined with a few key strategic mistakes from Mercedes, earned him the victory.

Race officials had made it clear throughout the weekend that they would do everything possible to keep the championship going on the right track. And they did, giving us an epic battle in the final round between the legend and the 24-year-old upstart.

But since the end of the race, Mercedes and their supporters have chosen to focus on one decision made by race director Michael Masi: to only allow overtaken cars between Hamilton and Verstappen to clear the safety car before a final lap of the race. race.

There have even been rumors that Hamilton has moved away from Formula 1 altogether as a result of this result. Hamilton has already discussed quitting Formula 1, but could things turn out differently this time around? If he left, Mercedes would have a huge decision to make in appointing a replacement.

George Russell is expected to be in a Silver Arrow for his first full season and would benefit from a veteran presence. But the young Briton already has 60 starts and a podium under his belt, so he may be ready to take on the lead role of the best Formula 1 team.

While there is probably no one who can replace what Hamilton brings in terms of inspiring young people around the world and standing at the front of important social causes – and in terms of bringing his driving skills closer together. – someone’s going to have to fill that seat if he walks away.

Here are five possibilities.