Lewis Hamilton says he will be interested to see who puts themselves forward to be his teammate at Mercedes next season.
After Nico Rosberg shocked the motor racing world with the news of his retirement following his title success this year, Mercedes is set to start the search for his replacement on Monday. Niki Lauda has revealed that several drivers have been in touch about the vacant seat, but no names have been formally linked to the team beyond speculation in the press.
Asked if he had any words advice for potential candidates, Hamilton joked: "If you can't stand the heat, don't come!
"No, it's a great environment. When you're in the Mercedes family it's a beautiful place to be. It's probably the only team where you are a part of the family, I would imagine. If you drive for Mercedes you generally are a part of Mercedes for life, unless you burn that bridge and go somewhere else.
"So I would just say for a driver that's coming, there's nothing to be afraid of in respect to being a part of this great team. I'm interested to see who would want to be my team-mate and I'd respect anyone who would want to."
Hamilton says he is not fussed about being a part of the selection process, but believes some drivers would be a better fit than others.
"Honestly I really don't care, but I guess I'd have to think that if they want to talk to me they can talk to me about it. Ultimately, it would have to be someone who would work well in the team.
"There will be stronger characters and less-strong characters who will be able to deal with the competition or not be able to deal with the competition. Some drivers who would take alternative routes to be able to deal with the competition. There will be a good and bad one out there for sure. I'd be more than happy to help with that analysis."
Hamilton and Rosberg experienced several tense moments during their time as teammates at Mercedes, but the three-time world champion is confident he will finish ahead of anyone he is paired with next season.
"I've never needed a teammate to be able to push me, but the better the driver the better it is for me when I finish ahead of him. You need someone with good values to represent the team in a positive way, a good work ethic and consistency so we can win the constructors' championship.
"Daniel [Ricciardo] and [Max] Verstappen are very very consistent [for Red Bull] so in terms of challenging for constructors' titles, which is the team's first goal, we need to make sure it's equally as consistent as we were before."