Motor racing: Ecclestone tips Hamilton for third title

Wed Jan 21, 2015 12:11pm EST
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LONDON (Reuters) - Formula One supremo Bernie Ecclestone has tipped Lewis Hamilton to win a third Formula One title this season and says his Mercedes team could dominate for years to come.

"Whether he is (favorite) or not, I think he's going to win it," the 84-year-old Briton told Sky Sports television on Wednesday.

"Mercedes have done such a good job with this power unit, its left everybody behind and I can't see people catching up that quickly.

"Maybe in three years. We can't afford to wait three years, or two years or one year."

Hamilton took his second championship last season after winning 11 of the 19 races for the dominant team, with German team mate Nico Rosberg taking five victories and finishing runner-up.

Ecclestone said the Briton, who celebrated his 30th birthday this month, was a good champion for the sport because he was better known than Rosberg and more easily recognizable.

"He's a rapper. So we're going to get to a completely different audience as well now," he added. "He's going to be good as a world champion."

The season starts in Australia on March 15.

Hamilton has yet to sign a new contract beyond 2015 but he said he was relaxed with the situation.   Continued...

Mercedes Formula One World Champion Lewis Hamilton of Britain holds his trophy during the 2014 International Automobile Federation (FIA) Gala Prize-Giving ceremony in Doha December 5, 2014. REUTERS/Fadi Al-Assaad