Bernie Ecclestone believes a partnership of Lewis Hamilton and Sebastian Vettel would create a “super team” at Mercedes and would benefit Formula 1. 

Vettel is leaving Ferrari at the end of the year once his contract expires and has set off a driver market merry-go-round with Carlos Sainz announced as his replacement and Daniel Ricciardo subsequently joining McLaren in 2021 from midfield rivals Renault. 

The four-time world champion currently has no seat lined up for next season but has been linked with a possible move to Mercedes, with Toto Wolff admitting that signing Vettel would have appeal. 

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Former F1 supremo Ecclestone, who is a close friend of Vettel, has backed the notion of a Hamilton-Vettel pairing at Mercedes.

“I’d like to see him at Mercedes,” Ecclestone told RTL

“I’d like to see him against Lewis Hamilton, I think that would be good for Formula 1, good for the sport, good for the people watching.

“I think both of them get along with each other without any problems. It’s not a case of what their egos are, both have super talent. So it would make a super, super team.

“I don’t see any problem with Lewis being concerned at all and I know Sebastian would love to have the opportunity to race against him.”

Ecclestone also offered a theory as to why he believes Vettel has been unable to emulate the success of his childhood hero Michael Schumacher in winning a world championship with Ferrari. 

He explained: “Michael’s situation with Ferrari was a little bit different because I once said to him, ‘who’s running the team?’ He said ‘I am.’ That’s probably the truth why they’re so successful.

“The trouble with Italians, they haven’t really got a lot of leaders…they haven’t got a leader in my opinion. 

“The person in charge of the team is basically a super engineer, he’s been with Ferrari for more than 20 years.”

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