Lewis Hamilton is staying quiet because he wants to distance himself from Mercedes chief Toto Wolff, claims ex-F1 champion Jacques Villeneuve, who thinks Brit could turn his attention to career in HOLLYWOOD
- Jacques Villeneuve says Lewis Hamilton is planning his career in the USA
- Seven-time World Champion has remained quiet since defeat to Max Verstappen
- Villeneuve thinks Hamilton could walk away from the sport for a new challenge
Ex-Formula One World Champion Jacques Villeneuve believes Lewis Hamilton could be set for a career in Hollywood, with the Mercedes driver continuing to remain quiet ever since his controversial defeat to Max Verstappen in Abu Dhabi.
Hamilton saw what would have been a record-breaking eighth crown slip through his fingertips at the Yas Marina circuit on the final day of the 2021 F1 racing season.
FIA race director Michael Masi made the decision to set-up a final lap showdown between both Hamilton and Verstappen following a late safety car, which saw the lapped cars cleared.
Lewis Hamilton has not been heard since his defeat to Max Verstappen in Abu Dhabi
Verstappen claimed his first ever World Championship in controversial style on the final day
The controversial move meant Verstappen clinched his first ever world title, and after Hamilton’s post-race interview, the Brit hasn’t been heard since.
Villeneuve, who won the World Championship in 1997 with Williams, believes Hamilton may see his post-career state side.
‘I interpret Hamilton’s silence as him wanting to put some distance between himself and Wolff,’ he told La Gazzetta della Sport.
‘After all, you can lose with style, whereas Toto behaved like someone who is playing Monopoly. The moment he is losing, [he] throws the whole board into the air.
‘In doing so, Wolff suffered a lot of image damage, in my opinion.
‘Hamilton is sensitive to that because he is thinking about his future in America, maybe even in Hollywood.’
Hamilton’s contact with Mercedes runs until the end of the 2023 campaign, but following the events in Abu Dhabi, he may leave before the 2022 season starts.
Villeneuve also claimed he could only see Hamilton see out his current deal if his team give him a new car.
Ex-Williams driver Jacques Villeneuve says Hamilton’s future could lie in Hollywood
Hamilton and Verstappen embrace after the Dutchman secured the 2021 World Championship
‘It depends on the car that Mercedes will give Hamilton, whether he can win easily with it or not,’ he added.
‘Lewis is also a bit more tired, he has had [some] easy seasons after Nico Rosberg’s departure and he really won’t want to have another year like he experienced last season.
‘He thought he could easily bring in the record eighth title and that didn’t happen.
‘It’s like a diamond that you have in your hands and then suddenly it’s taken out of your hands.
‘In this way it hurt much more than if Verstappen would have simply led the whole race.’