Cape Town - 1996 World Champion Damon Hill thinks Nico Rosberg's
retirement could be weighing on Lewis Hamilton's mind as he makes Mercedes
"sweat" over a new deal.
Hamilton is out of contract at the end of the season and
talks over a new deal between himself and the Silver Arrows have gone on for
longer than expected.
And the delay has led to Hill pondering whether if the
retirement of his former team-mate is tempting the four-time World Champion to
take the same path.
"He has to really want to race and carry on," Hill
is quoted by The Sun. "He does have another life he wants to pursue
"Although he did not look like that in Barcelona last
week, he looked as though he was really hooked up and enjoys what he is doing
and can become champion again.
"But I wonder if Nico Rosberg’s retirement weighed on
his mind a little bit. When you are an F?1 driver, you hanker for the days when
you can escape from it.
"It is a very tough life for a driver. You start
thinking, especially in the mid-30s, about having a weekend off."
Hill also thinks that Hamilton plays a smart game when it
comes to contract negotiations, despite suggesting different to the press.
"Lewis does a very good job of appearing innocent and
not understanding but I think he has a very astute mind when it comes to what
his power is in the sport," Hill added.
"He is powerful enough and a precious commodity in the
sport and maybe just making them wait and sweat a bit. Mercedes might be
Hamilton will take a 17-point World Championship lead
heading into the Monaco Grand Prix this weekend.