McLaren Group and McLaren Automotive executive chairman Ron Dennis says that that McLaren could have done more to stay Lewis Hamilton in the team, other than opt not to.
Following six season association with McLaren, the Brit has joined the famous German F1 squad Mercedes in legend Michael Schumacher’s place, as he said he wanted a new challenge.
The Brit signed a three-year deal with the Mercedes AMG, worth a reported £15million a year. Hamilton made his F1 first appearance with McLaren in the 2007 season and went on to win the driver’s title in 2008.
“I think it’s wrong to portray that Lewis left this team,” Dennis told CBI Magazine.
“At the end of the day, you end up with a situation where you’re going to separate if the circumstances aren’t right. Life isn’t about one person deciding anything. It’s never that way. It’s about circumstances.”
“Everybody says ‘Am I bitterly this or bitterly that?’ What? I’m a realist. Did we have the ability to create a situation where we could have stayed together? Categorically, yes. Would that have been the right thing to do? We didn’t think so.”
Some media claims that Ron Dennis and Lewis Hamilton had split over contract discussions, but the McLaren chairman insists he holds no unwell will towards Hamilton.
“Whatever people choose to do at the end of a contractual period, the professional thing to do is to be supportive of the other side,” he added.
“We don’t wish him every success at Mercedes – that’s understandable, as he’s obviously going to be a competitor – but we don’t wish him anything negative.”