The 1997 F1 World Champion Jacque Villeneuve has weighed in on the rumours surrounding Lewis Hamilton joining Red Bull.
The rumours came out over the course of the final race weekend of the year at Abu Dhabi, and also followed speculation that Hamilton was looking at a move to Ferrari earlier in the year.
A representative of Hamilton reportedly contacted Red Bull over the possibility of partnering championship rival Max Verstappen, however Hamilton himself subsequently denied that any talks had taken place.
It subsequently emerged that Team Principal Christian Horner had spoken to someone close to Hamilton, and also sent a text prior to his contract extension with Mercedes.
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Villeneuve: If the noise comes out, who's there to check?
Villeneuve believes talks probably did take place between the two entities, but it is unlikely that any would admit to entertaining a move.
“As a driver, you’re not allowed to talk to other teams while you’re under contract and all that. But talks always happen," he told PlanetF1.
“Obviously, you cross people in the paddock or, sometimes, you’ll use someone who doesn’t work for you, but will still do the talk so you’re protected.
“But, if the noise comes out, you have to negate it. Then who’s there to check?"