Lewis Hamilton told of 14-driver queue for his Mercedes seat by Jenson Button

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Lewis Hamilton’s car would be in high demand as Jenson Button claims that 14 other drivers would want to drive it. After just four races, Hamilton, 37, is yet to come close to a win as the English driver has made his worst start since 2009.

Hamilton has already ruled himself out of championship contention, as team-mate George Russell started stronger than the seven-time championship winner. When discussing Hamilton’s car with Martin Brundle and Simon Lazenby, Button said: “There’s 14 drivers on the grid that would love to be driving that car.

“It’s still the third best car out there and that just shows their dominance over the last ten years. They have the third best car and think it’s almost time to put it in the bin.”

The trio were speaking on Sky Sports ahead of the Miami Grand Prix, the first time Formula One has had a race in Miami, as Button added: “It is going to be star-studded, I don’t think we would expect anything else being in Miami.

“Living in the states you feel the difference as well, I go places and I hear people talking about Formula One.

“I’ve never had that before. In the years that we have come here, so many years of racing in America I’ve never heard people just in the street talking about Formula One. But it’s happening and it’s great to see.”

Charles Leclerc will be hoping to extend his lead in the driver standings over second-placed Max Verstappen in Miami. Leclerc, 24, holds a 27-point lead over the Dutchman as he sits top with 86 points. The leader is also set to switch to a new power unit, a race earlier than Ferrari had potentially planned.

Button added: “I think for Charles it was the first time we saw him make a mistake this year.

“He’s been very on top of Max all year, every time Max has made a dive down the inside Charles just knows how to place the car to get him back on the exit.

“That was when we first saw Charles under pressure, and he did make a mistake. It happens and the great thing about Charles is that he owns up to it, and he moves on. I think we’re going to see a very competitive Charles, with the upgrades here in Miami.”

Miami hosts its first Grand Prix this weekend, as Leclerc will aim to extend his lead as Hamilton bids to improve on his 28 points so far.

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