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The heir unapparent: Who is Andrea Kimi Antonelli?

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Karun Chandhok | Racing driver


11 March 2024

Lewis Hamilton’s move from Mercedes to Ferrari for 2025 is the most surprising driver transfer since Damon Hill got sacked in the middle of his championship-winning season and ended up struggling to qualify an Arrows. Sure, there have been rumours for a while linking Lewis to the Italian giants, but when Mercedes announced a new two year deal late last summer, we all assumed that Lewis would end his career with Arrows of the Silver variety.

Exactly five months later, Lewis toddled off to Toto Wolff’s house to deliver the news – it turned out there was an option in his contract to leave after just one year. This is a bold and exciting step for a driver with nothing left to prove and who will be starting his deal in the most highly pressured seat in F1 at the age of 40.

But then Lewis isn’t just any driver – he’s a man with a talent that is extraordinary even when compared to most of the extraordinary talents on the grid around him, who has shown time and again over the last 16 years that he can dig deep and deliver like very few others can. There’s no doubt history will count him among the five greatest drivers of all. This was not a move motivated by money but triggered in part by Lewis wanting to scratch the Ferrari itch but, crucially, also being nudged towards Maranello by a Mercedes team looking beyond him to its future.

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