Formula 1 drivers often have to make difficult career decisions. A well-timed move to a team on the rise can make a champion, while the opposite is also true. Seven-time world champion Lewis Hamilton is contemplating settling down, though, to close out his career with the Mercedes Formula 1 team.
As reported by Motorsport.com, Hamilton is currently in the last year of his deal with Mercedes. He stated during the off-season that he considers the renewal a formality, though he is as yet to sign an extension. While team boss Toto Wolff has admitted that his star driver may look elsewhere for a more competitive car, Hamilton has thus far disabused that notion.
"I continue to feel very much at home. It's family. I see myself being with Mercedes till my last days, to be honest," said Hamilton. The British driver has taken his inspiration from one of his fellow F1 countrymen. "If you look at the legends, Sir Stirling Moss was with Mercedes till the end of days. So, that's been the dream for me to one day have that."
Despite Mercedes lacking the prodigious pace of former years, Hamilton still has a bright feeling looking forward. Like many champion drivers, he sees his role as contingent on performance. "As long as I can continue to help drive the team forwards and really contribute, then that's why I want to stay," he says. In the event he can't keep up the pace, he would step aside, but that day isn't here yet, he says, noting that "I'm still pretty young, in pretty decent shape."
Today, it's obvious that Hamilton and Mercedes are perfect partners. However, it wasn't always thus. When his move from McLaren to Mercedes was first leaked to the press in late 2012, fans and pundits were aghast. He was leaving behind a legendary top-tier team to race for an unproven squad that many thought had fluked a championship win in 2009. That move proved to be the right one. Mercedes went on to completely annihilate the field from 2014 onwards. McLaren, on the other hand, quickly became a backmarker.
Fans will want to see Hamilton claim an eighth World Championship without the nonsense that robbed him of the title in 2021. Those that cheer for his rivals will enjoy seeing him go toe-to-toe with the best of the grid. Plus, we all know Alonso still has scores to settle. Here's hoping Hamilton and Mercedes march back to the front to duke it out for years to come.
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