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Leclerc responds to Mercedes rumours as Hamilton says they have ‘no impact’ on his F1 future

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Charles Leclerc has brushed aside reports linking him with Mercedes, insisting that he remains “fully committed” to Ferrari and achieving his dream of winning a world championship for the famous marque.

Leclerc’s future came under scrutiny in the Italian press during the April break, with the Monegasque and Ferrari enduring a difficult start to the 2023 season – one that is yet to yield a podium for driver or team.

READ MORE: ‘I would be very frustrated if they were relaxed’ – Vasseur opens up on how Leclerc and Sainz are dealing with Ferrari’s setbacks

However, when asked about the speculation, and whether he has spoken to Mercedes, Leclerc said: “No, not yet, not for the moment. For now, I am fully focused on the project I am in today, which is Ferrari. I fully trust and I am confident for the future, then we will see, but I am fully confident for the project of Ferrari.

“I’m fully committed to Ferrari and I love Ferrari. It has always been a dream for me to be in this team, and my main priority is to win a world championship with this team, so it’s not something in my mind.”

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Leclerc has retired from two of the first three races this season

Pushed if there has been any contact at all with Mercedes boss Toto Wolff, Leclerc – whose current deal runs through 2024 – stood firm, adding: “No. Zero, zero, really zero. You [the media] all smile because you don’t believe me, but I promise."

Leclerc's team boss Fred Vasseur was also quizzed on the rumours, but he insisted that the team were still aiming to win a world title with the Monegasque driver.

“Drivers are key," Vasseur said. "I said yesterday, it’s very important to have the drivers involved with the project and for a long time. I’m sure we have a good combination and, the question about Charles, it’s a question as usual.

“But I think Charles said also that he wants to be world champion with Ferrari, and I want to be world champion with Charles or with Carlos [Sainz]. We are very happy with the drivers... and they are doing a good job. So far so good.”

‘He wants to be world champion with Ferrari’ – Vasseur addresses speculation on Leclerc’s future

The rumours come amid ongoing discussions between Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes over a contract extension, with the 38-year-old yet to be confirmed alongside George Russell for 2024.

WATCH: Laughs, confusion and pure drama as Leclerc and Sainz take on ‘Goggle Games’

When asked about the Leclerc to Mercedes rumours, and whether they impact getting a new deal over the line, Hamilton said: “No, not really. I think maybe some of the drivers have relationships with different [team] bosses and stuff.

“I like where I am, I love my team, and I’m grateful for the journey we’ve been on and what we’re working on moving forwards. So it doesn’t have any impact, no.”

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