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McLaren claims that should Lewis Hamilton opt to move elsewhere for 2013 it has no back-up plan, the Woking team appearing to take it for granted that he will stay.
"I haven't given Plan B any thought," said Martin Whitmarsh. "We want Lewis to stay and we want him to stay if he wants to stay."
While Hamilton tried his hardest to avoid the issue at the weekend, the media, fired up by last week's claim that he is heading to Mercedes, was having none of it. Consequently, the Englishman's plans for next season overshadowed the on-track action for most of the weekend.
Rather than easing the situation, Hamilton's win on Sunday only sought to muddy the waters further, his attitude post-race suggesting that all is not well between the Englishman and his team. That said, the youngster is mourning the death of his Aunt and a Grand Prix, especially at Monza, allows no time for private grief.
Represented by Simon Fuller's XIX Entertainment, it is thought that plans are being put in place to develop Hamilton as a brand, similar to the Beckhams, something that might not sit well within the corporate confines of the MTC in Woking.
While many believe that a move to Mercedes might prove unrewarding - in terms of the championship at any rate - the new formula in 2014 could swing the German manufacturer's way.
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