Lewis Hamilton could go on to beat Michael Schumacher's all-time record of seven Formula One world titles, motorsport boss Max Mosley predicts.
Hamilton missed out on his first world title by one point in 2007
"Lewis will get plenty of turns," said Mosley. "Unless something goes dramatically wrong, he will win several world championships.
"If he races for as long as Michael did then he may very well beat his record."
Hamilton made a spectacular F1 debut in 2007, losing the drivers' title to Kimi Raikkonen by a single point.
However, the 23-year-old's debut season was also marred by his spats with former McLaren team-mate Fernando Alonso and the fall-out of the "spy row".
My advice to Lewis would be to put the money in the bank and don't worry about the politics
McLaren were fined £50m and lost all their constructors' points after being found in possession of confidential Ferrari technical data.
The pressure of the politics surrounding the sport and the media spotlight even led to suggestions by Hamilton that he could quit.
But instead he has signed a new five-year deal with McLaren, reported to be worth £10m per year, and Mosley says that was the right decision.
"My advice to Lewis would be to put the money in the bank and don't worry about the politics," said Mosley, president of the sport's governing body the FIA.
"As long as he keeps driving quick he will be all right. You can understand him saying 'I'm fed up of this' which he is entitled to say, but I don't think it would be a considered judgment."
Mosley also insisted that new FIA guidelines, which will see drivers charged £7,441 for the required super licence and £1,488 per point they win, will be used to improve safety.
"We spend a fortune on safety, and most if it is to the benefit of the drivers," said Mosley.
"These drivers are earning mega-bucks, we're spending a fortune to ensure they're safe, so hence the increase."
Mosley also explained a change to the structure for race stewards for this season.
The highly respected permanent steward, Tony Scott-Andrews, has retired and will not be replaced.
Instead, Alan Donnelly, formerly a Labour member of the European Parliament and last season Mosley's representative in the paddock, will be a non-voting administrator.
"Alan Donnelly will be there at all the races," Mosley said. "The idea is that he will be non-voting.
"There will be three stewards that vote but Alan's job will be first of all to make an interface between them and the race control and the press and so on.
"Secondly, it will be to try and keep some sort of momentum so that we get the decisions quickly... there is no excuse for taking as long as it has."