Multiple Formula 1 Grand Prix winner Johnny Herbert has claimed that Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton is not happy with his current contract with the German outfit.
The contract situation between Hamilton and Mercedes was one of the more intriguing storylines during F1's winter break. There was a lot of back and forth between both parties before a one-year contract extension was agreed upon. Herbertbelieves that the seven-time world champion is far from happy regarding his latest Formula 1 contract and fears he might leave the sport if things don't go his way.
"I've heard he's (Hamilton) not particularly happy with the situation," Herbert told Motorsport-total.com.
"I hope he doesn't stop, because he can still give Formula 1 a lot. We know how important it was for the global growth of the sport in many areas."
Herbert also went on to state the importance of motivation and how the chllange from Red Bull and Max Verstappen might be enough to keep Hamilton interested in Formula 1 for a few more years.
"Motivation has always played a major role," Herbert said.
"Ayrton always said about motivation that it was a big deal for him to come back year after year, to push himself, to keep getting better and better. And I think it's the same with Lewis. If you've had a success like his, then you need that kind of motivation.
"If Max and Red Bull can challenge him for a whole season, then he'll enjoy it."
Herbert finally emphasised how Mercedes might decide to leave the sport, though he also admitted most teams would queue up for the British driver's signature if he were to be left without a team.
"Who wouldn't want Lewis Hamilton in their car?" Herbert continued.
"At the end of the year it gives you the opportunity to see exactly how things are - where exactly Mercedes-Benz will be.
"There were always rumors that they might slowly withdraw from the sport. That wasn't the case, of course. But it could happen."