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Ferrari to "go all out" to sign Lando Norris as Charles Leclerc eyes Lewis Hamilton seat

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Ferrari will “go massively all out” to tempt Lando Norris to join them if Charles Leclerc were to leave, it has been claimed.

Formula 1 is no stranger to some musical chairs when it comes to drivers moving teams. Quite often, one significant move has a chain reaction on the rest of the grid as teams poach replacements for their own outgoing racers.

At some point, Mercedes are likely to start such a domino effect. He plans on signing a new contract, but 38-year-old Lewis Hamilton will eventually hang up his racing suit and leave his current seat with the Silver Arrows vacant.

Replacing the seven-time world champion will be an impossible task, but needless to say they will want a top driver in that seat to soften the blow as much as they can. It has been suggested Leclerc, whose current Ferrari deal ends in 2024, might be tempted to switch if he feels he would have more chance of becoming world champion.

If that were to happen, ex-Ferrari team manager and much-admired F1 journalist Peter Windsor believes Norris will be at the top of the Scuderia’s shortlist of replacements. “Let’s say Lewis stops at the end of ’24 – let’s say ’23 and see how we go – I would imagine Toto is going to try and go for Charles Leclerc,” he said on a Twitch stream.

“It would be a mess probably, putting Leclerc with [George] Russell, but if he’s prepared to put Russell with Hamilton, he’s obviously going to be prepared to put him with Charles Leclerc. Let’s assume Leclerc went from Ferrari to Mercedes to replace Lewis, which is not a completely stupid assumption, what then would Ferrari do? I think they would go massively all out to get Lando.

Ferrari may turn to British F1 star Lando Norris if they lose Leclerc
Getty Images)

“And I think Lando at that point would find it quite hard to say no, putting aside all the contractual stuff because I do think that at that level, they can afford to [buy out his contract]. I think Lando has got half a chance at Ferrari, if Leclerc goes somewhere to replace Lewis – which would be good, wouldn’t it?”

Norris’ contract with McLaren expires in 2025, so chief executive Zak Brown has been making it clear he is not concerned about losing the Brit to a rival just yet. He recently declared : “I’m convinced we’re going to give him a winning car.

“We have a long-term contract with him. I think he feels very comfortable within the team.. He knows the journey we’re on. He has bought into the journey that we’re on, and I think it’d be early to be worried about it.”

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