Hamilton's future Mercedes F1 team-mate has to ‘stand the heat’

Lewis Hamilton issued a light-hearted warning to any driver wanting to replace Nico Rosberg as his Mercedes Formula 1 team-mate that they must be ready to "stand the heat"

Hamilton's future Mercedes F1 team-mate has to ‘stand the heat’

Hamilton and Rosberg were team-mates for four F1 seasons, with Hamilton winning the 2014 and '15 world championships before Rosberg broke through this year.

Who should replace Rosberg in 2017?

Rosberg subsequently announced his immediate retirement, leaving a vacancy with the team that has dominated the championship for the last three seasons.

When asked if he had any advice for an incoming team-mate, Hamilton joked: "If you can't stand the heat, don't come.

"It's a great environment. When you're in the Mercedes family it's a beautiful place to be.

"If you drive for Mercedes you generally are a part of Mercedes for life, unless you burn that bridge and go somewhere else.

"You look at Sir Stirling Moss, for example. He's still very much a part of Mercedes.

"So I would just say for a driver that's coming, there's nothing to be afraid of in respect to being a part of this great team.

"I'm interested to see who would want to be my team-mate and I'd respect anyone who would want to."

Mercedes motorsport boss Toto Wolff said the team will take its time in replacing the world champion, and Hamilton said he is unfazed about who could arrive, but will provide input if asked.

"Honestly I really don't care but I guess I'd have to think that if they want to talk to me they can talk to me about it," he said.

"It would have to be someone who would work well in the team.

"There will be stronger characters and less-strong characters who will be able to deal with the competition or not be able to deal with the competition.

"There will be a good one out there for sure. I'd be more than happy to help with that analysis.

"You need someone with good values to come in and represent the team in a positive way, a good work ethic, consistency so we can win the constructors' championship.

"Daniel [Ricciardo] and [Max] Verstappen are very very consistent [for Red Bull] so in terms of challenging for constructors' titles, which is the team's first goal, we need to make sure it's equally as consistent as we were before."

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