• Mercedes is open to identifying a new teammate for Lewis Hamilton next season
  • Mercedes boss Toto Wolff reveals Hamilton's thoughts on the matter
  • Hamilton earlier stressed that Valtteri Bottas is his best teammate

Lewis Hamilton could be open to the idea of having a new teammate.

Mercedes is already facing a wide array of challenges this season. However, team principal Toto Wolff is well aware that they still have to sort things out regarding who’s gonna be Hamilton’s partner in the future.

It has become more and more apparent that the Silver Arrows will be picking between Valtteri Bottas and George Russell.

According to Wolff, Hamilton is totally ok with Bottas but is also seeing Russell as an “interesting candidate.”

“No, Lewis is part of the team and we are discussing all that, in the same way, I am discussing almost everything with Valtteri [Bottas],” Wolff told Channel 4.

“I asked him [Hamilton] ‘is it okay for you announcing [Hamilton’s new deal] and he was like ‘I don’t care.’” he added. “So everything is out in the open. Lewis obviously really enjoys being with Valtteri, but equally, he sees George [Russell] coming up as an interesting candidate for the future, so he is absolutely neutral to whoever sits in the second car.”

Wolff assured that he will be as neutral as possible throughout the entire process of picking between Bottas and Russell.

However, he also stressed that the “most important” thing at the moment is completing Hamilton’s fresh terms.

“I think most important is that we have Lewis’ contract done, and in the next few races we have to assess what we will do with the second seat,” the Mercedes chief pointed out. “I’ve always had the greatest transparency with Valtteri and George and I will do it the same this time around.”

Russell came to prominence in Mercedes after he filled in for Hamilton at last year's Sakhir GP due to coronavirus.

The youngster made his mark on the team, finishing just behind Valtteri Bottas on P2 in qualifying.

Bottas, on the other hand, has been on excellent terms with Hamilton, and the seven-time world champion doesn’t see the necessity to have it altered.

“Valtteri is my team-mate now and both of us had our ups and downs in our careers,” Hamilton told reporters in Austria last month. “But as I said, I think he is a fantastic team-mate and I don’t necessarily see that it needs to change. We have worked well for many years.”

“Valtteri has been my best team-mate overall and when I say team-mate it’s not just driver performance, it’s about team morale and how you work in the team-mate environment."

Valtteri Bottas
Valtteri Bottas (L) wants to remain teammates with Lewis Hamilton at Mercedes in 2019. In this picture, Pole position qualifier Hamilton of Great Britain and Mercedes GP and second place qualifier and teammate Bottas of Finland and Mercedes GP wave to the crowd during qualifying for the Spanish Formula One Grand Prix at Circuit de Catalunya in Montmelo, Spain, May 12, 2018. Mark Thompson/Getty Images