Martin Brundle x Lewis Hamilton Plan B for 8th F1 Championship

Martin Brundle speculates on a possible shift in strategy for Lewis Hamilton as he strives for an elusive 8th Formula 1 World Championship.


By Ben Bush
Updated on February 13, 2024

Lewis Hamilton 8th Title

Currently sharing the record of seven Drivers’ World Championships with Michael Schumacher, Lewis Hamilton stands alongside the iconic driver, surpassing Juan Manuel Fangio‘s five titles.

Hamilton narrowly missed an eighth title in 2021, losing to Max Verstappen in a dramatic season finale. However, recent seasons have seen Hamilton unable to secure a Grand Prix victory, marking a challenging phase in his illustrious career.

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Martin Brundle Contemplates a Shift in Strategy for Lewis Hamilton

As Hamilton approaches the 2024 F1 season, turning 39, and with significant rule changes expected in 2026, the clock is ticking for him to clinch an eighth world championship, a feat that would solidify him as the most successful F1 driver in terms of championships won. Despite holding records for most race wins, points, podiums, and pole positions, adding another championship would be a crowning achievement.

The performances of older drivers like Fernando Alonso, who remains competitive at 42, suggest that age is less of a barrier in modern F1. However, F1 history indicates that winning titles beyond the late thirties is rare, with examples like Jack Brabham, Mario Andretti, and Nigel Mansell being the oldest champions in their late thirties.

With the number of Hamilton’s remaining seasons potentially in the single digits and without significant advancements from Mercedes, his window for another championship is narrowing. This situation leads Sky F1 broadcaster Martin Brundle to believe that Hamilton might be considering an alternative approach or ‘Plan B’ for the latter part of his career.

In a special year-end column for Sky F1, the British broadcaster highlighted this point: “I think if Lewis senses that the eighth title is unachievable in a reasonable time frame, he’ll be thinking of Plan B

However, Brundle did not clarify whether he thinks Hamilton might consider retirement or shift to another high-level motorsport discipline, such as the World Endurance Championship and competing in the prestigious Le Mans 24 Hours.

Martin Brundle on the Competition Between Lewis Hamilton and George Russell: A Close Match

Another aspect for Hamilton to ponder is the possibility that even with significant improvements from Mercedes, he faces a formidable challenge from his teammate. Over the past two years, Mercedes’ junior driver George Russell has firmly established himself within the team.

Russell experienced a challenging 2023 but has demonstrated considerable potential and speed, positioning himself as a persistent competitor to Hamilton.

Regarding a potential battle for the championship, what are Brundle’s thoughts on how it might unfold between Hamilton and Russell?

“I think they’re so close, those two, if you look at the stats, but George had a couple of nightmare races this year. That’s a very good question,” he said.

“It depends if Lewis maintains his current motivation, but it’s so close to call.

“Lewis knows how to do that but George has got youth on his side. I don’t know the answer to that, but I definitely wouldn’t say, ‘Oh, Lewis without a doubt, because he’s already a seven-time champion.’ That I would absolutely not say.

“Until George is in a championship-winning position, we don’t know if he’s got the head to cope with it.”


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About The Author

Chief Editor

Ben Bush

Ben is our chief editor specialising in F1 from the 1990s to the modern era. Ben has been following Formula 1 since 1986 and is an avid researcher who loves understanding the technology that makes it one of the most exciting motorsport on the planet. He listens to podcasts about F1 on a daily basis, and enjoys reading books from the inspirational Adrian Newey to former F1 drivers.

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