There have been suggestions that Michael Schumacher will retire at the end of the season and will be replaced at Mercedes by Lewis Hamilton. Following Hamilton’s disclosure of technical team information on Twitter rumours began circulating that Hamilton may be about to decide his 2013 future. Bernie Ecclestone added fuel to the fire by suggesting that Schumacher was to retire at the end of the season leaving a vacant seat for Mercedes to fill.
Both Hamilton’s team McLaren and his management were quick to comment that the rumours were untrue. They added that talks were continuing between Hamilton’s management and the McLaren team. However Mercedes did little to dispel the rumours by not commenting on the suggestions, instead they refused to give an answer about their 2013 line-up. Hamilton later attempted to quell the rumours by releasing his own statement that seemed to suggest he is in advanced talks with McLaren. Whilst it is apparent that all might not be well between Hamilton and McLaren, a move to Mercedes may lessen his chances of adding to his 2008 World Championship. Although Mercedes has stepped up this season securing their first win since being renamed in 2010, the last few races have seen Mercedes struggle and begin to lag behind their top team rivals. Ultimately it appears more likely that Hamilton will remain with McLaren into the future.
Whichever team Hamilton ends up in next season it seems likely that Schumacher will head into retirement once again. Despite him saying that he does not intend to decide on his future until October, Schumacher’s form in the 2012 season seems to suggest that he may step away from racing at the end of the season.