Though it's unclear if a final contract has been signed or not, talks are still progressing, and this week's end could see the outcome.
Lewis Hamilton was full of confidence after clocking the fourth fastest time in Friday’s practice for this weekend’s Canadian Formula One Grand Prix.
He said he was looking forward to taking his car “for a spin” on “hyper-soft” tyres today.
The championship leader and defending champion said Mercedes had chosen to bring only five sets of the softest tyres for each car instead of their rivals’ eight sets.
“I believe that that is what explains the gaps in the time-sheets — it’s down to the different tyre choices today, but we will find out for sure on Saturday,” said the Briton, a four-time champion.
“Hopefully, we will get a good feeling when we first take the hyper-softs out for a spin in third practice and it’s not too different to what we’ve been driving today.”
He added: “It’s been a beautiful day, the weather has been fantastic, the track feels better than ever and it’s such a fun track to drive. We don’t have any problems and I really enjoyed it.”
Hamilton, 33, is bidding to equal seven-time champion German Michael Schumacher’s record of seven wins in the Canadian Grand Prix to extend his 14-point lead ahead of another four-time champion, German Sebastian Vettel.