Haug says McLaren are working on driver contracts

MERCEDES-BENZ motorsport director Norbert Haug hinted on Friday that the McLaren team are working on new contracts for their drivers Mika Hakkinen and David Coulthard.

Haug said that he does not expect any surprises in the contract negotiations and that suggests Coulthard and Hakkinen will be kept on as Formula One's current longest standing partnership.

"It is a bit early to confirm anything now, but you can be sure we are working on the contracts for next year," said Haug. "Don't expect any surprises. We are doing what we need to do."

Coulthard has been at the team since 1996, when he joined from Williams and teamed up with Hakkinen for the first time. Coulthard is keen to stay with McLaren as he chases his first World Championship.

Coulthard said: "I'd like to stay here with the team. I've been here since 1996 and that is a long time, but I am happy and confident that they have what is required for me to succeed.

"I would be delighted if the rumors are true and there was something definite this weekend, but we would need to have a conversation first for that to happen."

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