Lewis Hamilton has been in contact with his former team McLaren in what has been described as 'tentative talks' by reports.
The 29-year-old is currently involved in a fierce battle for the drivers' championship with his Mercedes team-mate Nico Rosberg but has fallen behind the German after a retirement and a second place finish in the last two races.
"Telegraph Sport understands the team have also opened very tentative dialogue with Lewis Hamilton, in case the psychological scars of this year's title fight at Mercedes become too great. The only circumstances in which Hamilton would leave Mercedes are if he lost out to Nico Rosberg for the drivers' championship."
After a run of four straight race victories put Hamilton in charge of the title race, he has been unable to beat his rival Rosberg in any of the last three and there has seen a significant power shift psychologically towards Nico Rosberg.
Rosberg appears to be handling the pressure of the situation far greater than the emotional Hamilton who has made costly mistakes as well as having a lot of unfortunate luck.
As for a move to McLaren at the end of the season, in each teams current state, it would seem absolutely crazy to make the switch. Mercedes lead the constructors' championship by a staggering 158 points.
Meanwhile, eight time constructor champions McLaren find themselves a disappointing sixth in the standings with just 72 points, trailing the likes of Williams and Force India.
McLaren have failed to be competitive for a while now. They were fifth overall in the championship last season and have failed to win a race since the end of the 2012 campaign. The current gap between the two teams would suggest that Mercedes are a team going in the right direction and McLaren are certainly struggling in a transition phase.
Of course, Lewis Hamilton has incredibly strong links with McLaren. He was brought through the racing system by the support of McLaren and Ron Dennis and the affiliation is major. He and the team have always said the door is open for a return at some stage.
If Hamilton were to feel he could no longer continue with Mercedes then McLaren would certainly be an option for him. But there is a good team around him at Mercedes and if they can iron out any difficulties there are and find a bit of luck, Hamilton could turn around his deficit and go on to claim a second world title and there would be no exit talk.
But timing is everything in Formula One for a driver. Being at the right team at the right time. Hamilton timed his jump to Mercedes perfectly while Sebastian Vettel enjoyed four years at the right time with the Red Bull team.
Formula One changes so quickly with its development and McLaren have the exciting prospect of the Honda engine for next season which could a contributor to making them a race-winning team once again.
It would be major news if Hamilton agreed to return to lead that new era for the team. But for now he must concentrate on this season and beating Nico Rosberg, starting at the British Grand Prix.
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