Hamilton has only failed to beat a teammate over the course of an F1 season twice – losing to Brit champ Jenson Button in 2011 and the now-freshly retired Nico Rosberg in 2016 in straight fight for the world championship.
But one driver believes he could be the third racer to outscore the triple world champion – if he was given the chance.
The Silver Arrows have yet to announce Hamilton’s teammate for next season – but all signs point to Williams driver Valtteri Bottas taking the Mercedes GP seat for 2017.
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“I’d have confidence that I could get the job done”
Red Bull rising star Daniel Ricciardo has thrown down the gauntlet to Hamilton.
The Australian driver – a four-time race winner – believes he could beat Hamilton in a straight fight if they were teammate.
But the 27-year-old has said he will see out his contract with the Renault-powered race team despite the vacancy at Mercedes.
When asked by Australian media, he said: “Absolutely. It’s something that I’ve been asked a few times – who would you love as a team-mate and all that – and Lewis was one that I was always saying.
“Obviously I think that he is massively talented and I think we would have a good fight, and, yeah, I’d have confidence that I could get the job done.”
Ricciardo made a splash in 2014 when he partnered four-time world champion Sebastian Vettel at Red Bull, wiping the floor with German before the defending champ jumped ship to Ferrari.
The Australian finished third in the championship in 2014 and 2016 behind the two dominant Mercedes GP cars.
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Mercedes are expected to hand the vacant seat to Bottas as he promoted from fellow Mercedes-powered team Williams – with reports of him visiting the Mercedes factory this week.
Felipe Massa will replace the Finn at the British outfit – despite officially retiring at the end of the 2016 season – to partner Canadian rookie Lance Stroll.
Ricciardo will remain at Red Bull and will have his hands full with teenage superstar Max Verstappen – who was at one point also linked to Mercedes GP’s vacant seat.
Source : Daily Star