In the latest development in Formula One, the sport’s most decorated driver statistically speaking, Lewis Hamilton, has quashed speculation of a possible move by re-signing with Mercedes.
The seven-time world champion has penned a new two-year deal, making a clear statement about his continued loyalty to the Silver Arrows.
However, the British racer denied that he had received a formal offer from the Maranello outfit. In a candid conversation with Blick, the Swiss newspaper, Hamilton did admit to some informal dialogue.
“Yes, we had a few conversations on the sidelines. I have a lot of respect for a lot of people at Ferrari,” he said.
But the idea of moving to Italy and donning the iconic red never appealed to him. Hamilton’s sentiment was unmistakable: his heart belongs to Mercedes.
Hamilton’s ongoing F1 journey at Mercedes
Hamilton’s decision to renew his journey with Mercedes stemmed from his deep passion for Formula One.
He confessed: “There are moments when I underestimate my love for this sport, although it’s a mixture of affection and despair. There are days when the thought of getting into the cockpit is frightening”.
But it’s this dichotomy of emotions, combined with the spirited competition of his team-mate George Russell, that fuels him says Hamilton: “You have to be on your toes all the time,” he remarked, emphasising the invigorating challenge that Russell brings.
Hamilton’s decision to stay with Mercedes wasn’t taken on the spur of the moment. The period leading up to the signing was filled with speculation about the champion’s next move.
The lynchpin that sealed the deal? Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff says Hamilton.
Their negotiations, as Hamilton describes them, were intense and took place over several sessions.
“Our motto has always been clear: from Thursday to Sunday, I’m exclusively dedicated to Formula One,” he explained. Hamilton’s admiration for Wolff shone through as he highlighted their strong professional relationship.
“Toto is respected by everyone, he is easy to negotiate with. His leadership qualities are truly unique,” Hamilton added.
Hamilton’s optimism for Mercedes
Despite a challenging season for Mercedes, with Hamilton’s last victory coming at the Saudi Grand Prix in December 2021, the British driver remains optimistic.
He was resolute in his belief in the team’s ability, stating, “We are poised for a comeback. I believe with all my heart that we have what it takes.”
For Hamilton, it’s not a question of if, but when he will stand on the podium. And when that moment comes, he believes it will be the crowning glory of his illustrious career.
Time will tell if this is indeed the case.
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