Stewart tells Hamilton to stay put at McLaren
19 February 2012 – Triple World Champion Jackie Stewart has advised Lewis Hamilton to stay put at McLaren, labelling the partnership as the ideal fit.
Lewis Hamilton took his maiden Championship in 2008 after a tumultuous year as Fernando Alonso's team-mate in the previous campaign but has since failed to finish higher than fourth in the following seasons, with Brawn GP and then Red Bull Racing dominating proceedings.
"I think McLaren are one of the best racing teams there's ever been in Formula One, they've got a facility second to none," the Scotsman said in an interview with Sky Sports News. "They've got a huge staff, they've got great knowledge and experience and have been competitive."
Much has been rumoured of the possibility that Hamilton might leave the Woking based outfit he's been a part of for 14 years, to join current rivals Red Bull, but Stewart maintained he could not see Hamilton with a more acceptable drive.
"At the end of last season Lewis Hamilton and Jenson Button could hardly have had a better car to drive - of course it's always greener on the other side of the fence, but where would he go?
"If Mark Webber can demonstrate this season as much as I still think he has in the way of talent, then why would Red Bull want to get rid of Mark Webber when they've got Vettel in that team as well? Therefore would he go to Ferrari? It's a possibility, but would he want to take on Alonso who he had such trouble with when Alonso joined McLaren?
"Things can be mended, things can change, but from my point of view I think Lewis Hamilton fits McLaren very well and I think McLaren fits Lewis Hamilton. I think Jenson Button as a team-mate is a very good team-mate to have, I think it's a good duo altogether."
Hamilton will begin his fifth season for McLaren, his third alongside team-mate and fellow Brit Jenson Button, in 2012. The 26 year-old from Stevenage will see his current deal with McLaren expire at the end of this year.