F1 news LIVE: Lewis Hamilton joins Chelsea bid as Carlos Sainz signs new Ferrari contract:



<p> Lewis Hamilton is backing a bid to buy Chelsea </p>
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Lewis Hamilton is backing a bid to buy Chelsea:

(AP)

Follow all the latest news and reaction from the world of F1 as the teams prepare for the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix.

The pressure remains on for several teams to get to grips with issues which have plagued them in the opening rounds, with free practice at Imola now just one day away. Red Bull have seen reigning champion Max Verstappen fail to finish twice in the first three races of the season, although the potential they retain was evident when he won the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix in round two. Either side of that triumph, it was Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc who was the victor – and he’s out in front in the driver standings as a result, with Ferrari also topping the constructors’ table.

Meanwhile, Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes are expected to “challenge for wins” again across the course of the season, although Toto Wolff has insisted it will “take time” for the team to fix the problems they have with porpoising and controlling the air flow under the new car. The seven-time champion Brit is staying positive about getting in the mix, but he is trailing new teammate George Russell ahead of the fourth race of the season in Italy this weekend.

Follow all the latest F1 news and reaction after a thrilling start to the 2022 season.

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Lewis Hamilton joins bid to buy Chelsea:

The consortium he is reportedly involved with is that which is headed by former Liverpool chairman Sir Martin Broughton – and tennis star Serena Williams is another said to be investing.

Former British Airways chairman Broughton “believes his bid to buy Chelsea would offer the biggest immediate cash injection” into the club, PA news agency have reported.

Lord Sebastian Coe is also backing Broughton’s bid with Crystal Palace co-owners Josh Harris and David Blitzer also heavily linked with joining, with the pair reportedly set for a controlling stake if successful.

Sky News: report that both Hamilton and Williams will pledge an estimated £ 10m to the cause, having both become “established investors” in different sporting areas in recent years.

Luke Baker:21 April 2022 12:21:

1650539450:

Red Bull chief makes admission about Max Verstappen’s suitability for 2022 cars:

The 24-year-old Dutchman suffered reliability failures in Bahrain and Australia, with the only race he has managed to finish so far this season coming in his victory at the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix.

His inability to manage the car also means his teammate Sergio Perez is currently ahead of him in the drivers’ standings and Marko believes Verstappen’s problems stem from how he treats the car with his full-throttle style.

Luke Baker:21 April 2022 12:10:

1650538490:

Charles Leclerc reminding Red Bull chief of Max Verstappen:

During the 2021 season, there was a generational clash between seven-time world champion Lewis Hamilton and Red Bull’s Verstappen. The outcome of the season long battle ended in controversial fashion and Marko now believes there is a change in the guard in F1 with new drivers fighting for pole.

“With Verstappen, Leclerc, Norris and Russell you now have four drivers who will shape F1 in the coming years,” the Austrian told F1insider.com.

Luke Baker:21 April 2022 11:54:

1650537632:

Nikita Mazepin questions F1 ‘values’ and explains a potential return:

Mazepin’s father, Dmitry, a Russian oligarch who is the majority shareholder in chemical company Uralchem ​​and one of Haas’ major sponsors, was pictured with Vladimir Putin as recently as January.

Haas removed Uralkali branding from its car during pre-season testing in Barcelona as Russia invasion of Ukraine accelerated and the team then confirmed they had terminated its contract with Mazepin and the company.

Opening up about the situation, Mazepin told Motorsport.com: “Everybody has a right to speak or not to speak and the FIA, the highest governing body, has enabled me to compete as long as I’m neutral.

“But I would say the biggest issue here is coming back to the sport where teams are allowed to be keeping sponsorship money without fulfilling the contract. And even asking for more, even though they say they do not want money from Russia. So I’m not sure, but the sport’s values ​​need to be evaluated for me after this. “

Full report on Mazepin’s comments:

Karl Matchett:21 April 2022 11:40:

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Hamilton ‘sulking’ after Mercedes poor start, claims Hakkinen:

Ex-Formula 1 driver Mika Hakkinen believes Lewis Hamilton may be looking to leave Mercedes after a bad start to the 2022 season.

Hamilton has been on the podium once this campaign, a third place finish in Bahrain, leaving him in fifth in the driver standings. The British driver would have been targeting a record eighth title this season but he is currently 43 points behind leader Charles Leclerc.

The same can not be said for Hamilton’s teammate George Russell who slid into second after a podium finish at the Australian Grand Prix.

“George comes from a team with little or no success. He had some good results in qualifying but not in races. All these achievements with Mercedes are new to him. Everything feels super-good, ”Hakkinen said.

“For Lewis, this is a disaster. And with George being ahead, it’s even worse. I wonder how Lewis behaves in the team meetings – I bet he’s sulking. I can imagine the sulking. There’s lots of complaining and whining.

“And now the natural thought process of drivers starts. ‘Should I go somewhere else?’

“It’s a fact. He’s been at Mercedes for years and won multiple championships. Now that things are not going well, he’ll start thinking of switching teams. “

Lewis Hamilton has been ‘sulking’, according to Mika Hakkinen:

(PA Wire)

Luke Baker:21 April 2022 11:21:

1650535232:

F1: ‘Still unclear’ if Volkswagen brands including Porsche and Audi will join, says Toto Wolff:

There are suggestions that Porsche and Audi, both companies part of the VW group, are joining Formula One, with reports indicating Red Bull are looking to partner with Porsche and Audi potentially joining forces with McLaren in 2026.

However, Wolff currently thinks the plan is far from agreed and there remain questions on what VW’s entry could potentially look like.

As quoted by: Motorsport.com:, Wolff said: “It’s great if the Volkswagen Group joins F1.

“Fantastic brand, it increases the credibility of what we do. And they are racers. But as far as I understand, there is no firm commitment yet.

“They’ve been sitting on the table for the regulations, but: [while] that commitment is not actually confirmed, we can not really know what the plans are. ”

More on the potential for Audi, Porsche and VW brands in F1:

Karl Matchett:21 April 2022 11:00:

1650534710:

Lewis Hamilton expected to ‘challenge for wins’ after Mercedes” big updates’

The seven-time world champion secured a podium finish in the first race of the season in Bahrain, but has struggled to find any pace in the car as he came tenth in Saudi Arabia and fourth in Australia.

Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff has already confirmed that, with a lack of practice sessions at the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix this weekend due to the return of the sprint race, they are not preparing to add many significant updates to the car.

But Gene believes the Silver Arrows will have major improvements in place for the following race in Barcelona and feels that then they will be able to compete for wins.

Luke Baker:21 April 2022 10:51:

1650534032:

Sergio Perez could quit F1 if race calendar expands again:

The 2022 season will see drivers navigate the most hectic schedule to date, with 23 races pencilled in between March and December.

There has been talk of even more races being added in the future, with F1 already announcing that they have secured a deal with Las Vegas to stage a weekend there from 2023.

But Mexican Perez, who has been part of the grid since he made his debut with Sauber in 2011, insists he would back away from the sport if the calendar congestion became even greater.

Speaking to: The Athletic:, he said: “It’s great that Formula 1 continues to develop and grow. You can see it everywhere we go, people are starting to recognize you on the street more and more often. But if there are too many races, it will be bad. At least for me.

“Right now we are constantly immersed in work, because there are a lot of races. We simply do not have enough time to spend time with our families.

“I personally have two children. I think if the calendar expands even more, I will definitely no longer compete in Formula 1. ”

Karl Matchett:21 April 2022 10:40:

1650532832:

‘Very talented’ Oscar Piastri will find F1 seat ‘pretty soon’

Esteban Ocon has tipped fellow Alpine teammate and highly rated prospect Oscar Piastri to soon find a Formula One seat.

The 21-year-old looks to be one of the brightest talents to soon enter the pinnacle of the sport having won the Formula Three and Formula Two World Championships in consecutive years.

Piastri joined the Renault Sport Academy, which was later rebranded to the Alpine Academy, in 2020 and is currently spending the 2022 season as a reserve driver for both Alpine and McLaren as he was unable to secure his own seat.

His Alpine teammate Ocon said: “Oscar is a great guy. I mean, he’s very involved in the team, he’s going to have a great testing program.

“He’s going to be probably the best-prepared driver ever, with the test program that he’s got at Alpine.

“I’m very sure he’s going to have a seat in Formula One shortly. I do not know where in the paddock, but opportunity comes for those who deserve it. ”

More on the youngster who was tipped to snare a spot this year and will surely be in line for a promotion to F1 soon:

Karl Matchett:21 April 2022 10:20:

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F1: Carlos Sainz signs new Ferrari contract until end of 2024:

Ferrari have confirmed the signing of a new contract for driver Carlos Sainz, with the 27-year-old signing for two more years through to the end of the 2024 season.

The Spaniard has clocked up 33 points from the first three races of the season, in what has been a fantastic start for the team after years in the wilderness.

Sainz finished on the podium at both Bahrain and Saudi Arabia, second and third respectively, before a DNF last time out in Australia.

After signing the extension, Sainz said:

“I am very happy to have renewed my contract with Scuderia Ferrari. I have always said that there is no better Formula 1 team to race for and after over a year with them, I can confirm that putting on this race suit and representing this team is unique and incomparable.

“My first season at Maranello was solid and constructive, with the whole group progressing together. The result of all that work has been clear to see so far this season.

“I feel strengthened by this renewed show of confidence in me and now I can not wait to get in the car, to do my best for Ferrari and to give its fans plenty to cheer about. The F1-75 is proving to be a front-runner, which can allow me to chase my goals on track, starting with taking my first Formula 1 win. ”

Full details on Sainz’s new deal and what it means for Ferrari here:

Alex Pattle:21 April 2022 10:00:

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