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Lewis Hamilton

Hamilton move fuelled by 'man of challenge' instinct - Grosjean

Hamilton faces going up against Leclerc on his own territory when he joins Ferrari next season. Not a problem, according to Romain Grosjean.

Hamilton Leclerc Quali US
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Former F1 driver Romain Grosjean believes Lewis Hamilton's switch to Ferrari for the 2025 season is down to the Briton being a "man of challenge".

The seven-time Drivers' champion will bring an end to his career-long association with Mercedes at the end of the season in order to join the Scuderia in one of the biggest driver transfers the sport has seen.

Grosjean, who jokingly suggested he could fill the void in a social media post using his photo shoot with Mercedes when a proposed test was announced in 2021, was taken aback by the news and on his YouTube channel said: "I was surprised, I didn't expect Lewis to leave Mercedes, he has such a great set-up there, such a great atmosphere.

"But you remember back in 2012, Lewis is a man of challenge and he swapped from McLaren to Mercedes - everyone was very surprised, especially given he had grown up with McLaren and he was a Ron Dennis protégé for a very long time and that McLaren was very successful at the time and Mercedes was struggling a little bit more.

"Ferrari is a very unique race team, the most iconic in the world. But why is he going?

"I guess he wants something new. He has had some difficult times with Mercedes but they always bounce back.

"I think they are taking a bit longer than they expected under the new rules to get back on top of their game. It is still a very competitive team but Red Bull is doing such a great job that everyone else has been left a little bit behind."

Hamilton not afraid of the challenge

Hamilton's move sets up a tantalising intra-team battle with Charles Leclerc, who has been with Ferrari since 2019 and has been able to build the team around his efforts.

But as Grosjean was quick to point out, Hamilton has dealt with high-calibre teammates before during his career.

"So next to Charles Leclerc, that will be an interesting duo, exciting to see that one," said Grosjean, who has raced in IndyCar since leaving F1.

"Lewis is not afraid of challenges. When he started at McLaren, who was his teammate? Fernando Alonso, one of the most fierce, fast and competitive teammates you can have in F1.

"Leclerc will be a very good benchmark."

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