Lewis Hamilton backs Audi and Porsche to join as new F1 teams after pair reveals plans in huge expansion

LEWIS HAMILTON has welcomed Audi and Porsche's plans to set up their own Formula 1 teams.

It is thought that Porsche will partner Red Bull and Audi will link up with Sauber as both car companies dip their toes into the sport.

And while Hamilton will be challenged in the coming years with the arrival of Audi and Porsche, he is happy that more competition is coming into the paddock.

Speaking to GP Fans, he said: "I mean I knew about it a long time ago already.

"So I think it's great that we're going to get new manufacturers within the sport – especially as you see there are a lot of teams that have the potential to be top teams but are our customer teams.

"So I think it's going to be great moving forward and so we welcome them in."

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Hamilton's former Mercedes teammate Valtteri Bottas was also gushing in his praise about the news of Audi and Porsche joining the sport.

He said: "I think it's great news. I think it would actually be nice to see more teams in Formula 1 at the moment.

"There's obviously still only 10. I remember, as a kid watching Formula 1, and the grid was much bigger and I think this makes it even more exciting. So yeah, more than welcome."

Meanwhile, Mercedes and Hamilton have struggled to compete for victories at the beginning of the 2022 season.

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Ferrari have set the benchmark in the first three races, winning with Charles Leclerc in Bahrain and Australia.

Max Verstappen clinched victory in Saudi Arabia, but Red Bull have lost ground in the drivers' championship due to reliability failures.

As a result, Mercedes' George Russell has assumed second place in the standings – although he is a huge 34 points behind Leclerc.

Hamilton sits down in fifth, three points ahead of last year's title rival Verstappen.

Next up for the F1 grid is the first European race of the season as they head to the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix at the Imola circuit in Italy.

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