Ecclestone Predicts Hamilton Will Leave McLaren


The F1 boss is still confident the Bahrain GP will go ahead.

Bernie Ecclestone met the British media this week at a launch of a new sponsorship agreement with F1 management, leaving a few attractive headlines in his wake. The best of them was his prediction that by season's end, Lewis Hamilton would leave McLaren. It's not a revolutionary suggestion, and of course not everything Ecclestone says is gospel, however the fissures in the bond between the team and its (former?) favorite son began to appear a long time ago.

The latest incident resonated when Hamilton criticized McLaren's new car after the first F1 test. Ecclestone, who last year described Hamilton's management as a 'disaster' said: "If he doesn't perform this year he'll be looking to move on. And the team, maybe, will also be looking to him to move on. I spoke to him [Hamilton] the other day. I think he's got a bit more focused. "I don't agree with the people he's got surrounding him and so-called managing him - I think he doesn't need that sort of management." When asked if Hamilton would see out his career with McLaren he answered: "I doubt that."

Ecclestone also said that Ferrari has problems with their new car, but it is something they can fix swiftly. "I think you are going to find they are going to fix it quite shortly," Ecclestone said. When asked about the Bahrain GP Ecclestone was confident that the race will go ahead, even though a few of the teams' personnel fear that the presence of the teams at the Gulf state will contribute to the unrest there and worsen the human conditions.

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