“If you ask me now if he deserves the agreement, I say yes”

The Finn is making no secret he wants to keep his red cockpit.

“I’m happy for Kimi,” said Ferrari chief Maurizio Arrivabene after the race, “because now I can say officially that he is back and we have two strong drivers.

“But that does not mean that I am going to sign a contract with Kimi tomorrow, which I made clear when I talked about the matter with him.

“If you ask me now if he deserves the agreement, I say yes.  But I want to keep him alert.  Kimi is at his best when he is a bit worried.  This is his kind of psychological approach,” Arrivabene is quoted by Finland’s Turun Sanomat.

“At the moment, the paper is still white,” the charismatic Italian continued.  “It seems that when I picked up the pen, Kimi went onto the podium!”

Arrivabene’s position also sends the loud-and-clear message to Hamilton that the door to Maranello is not slammed shut.

“Lewis is a world champion,” he is quoted by Germany’s Sky, “and every world champion dreams of driving one day for Ferrari.

“But right now we have two world champions and we don’t need another.”