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Thursday, June 13, 2024

What we discovered about Hamilton from his new Mercedes F1 deal

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Barring a shock twist comparable to damage or worse, Hamilton intends to extend his time driving at Mercedes in F1 through the 2024 and 2025 seasons – within the course of competing in 13 seasons. 

That’s two greater than the present file of 11 which he at present shares with Michael Schumacher, after the German raced with Ferrari between 1996 and 2006. Hamilton already leads when it comes to file variety of races began for a single crew, along with his 213 Mercedes begins to Schumacher’s 180 for the Scuderia. 

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Famously, the Hamilton and Mercedes partnership is one in all all sport’s large success tales, with the crew emphasising his 82 wins and 72 poles as a part of that in its announcement of his new two-year deal – plus team-mate George Russell incomes an extension till the tip of 2025 too – at this weekend’s 2023 Italian Grand Prix. 

Simply an hour after that information was revealed, Hamilton confronted the media within the official pre-event press convention at Monza, the place he expanded on the intentions behind his new deal.  

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This included a number of fascinating elements of his present mindset and revealed a driver who, at 38, feels his time competing in F1 is pretty removed from over. 

The preliminary major takeaway was his remark that he and Mercedes have “unfinished enterprise” left to attain in F1 – a reference to their mixed want to regain the championship crowns they misplaced to Max Verstappen and Pink Bull in 2021. 

Additionally hanging within the air had been the reminiscences of the controversial moments of that season and its finale, the place Hamilton misplaced the Abu Dhabi GP he had all however gained to an incorrect officiating name that supplied his rival the prospect to show the race and championship locations round fully. 

Pink Bull Racing Workforce Principal Christian Horner shakes fingers with second positioned Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes

Photograph by: Getty Photographs / Pink Bull Content material Pool

When requested what he significantly meant by “unfinished enterprise”, Hamilton replied: “We’re making an attempt to win extra world championships and I believe that the unfinished enterprise is getting us again to the highest – it’s getting again and preventing for world championships.   

“We’ve been probably the most profitable crew in historical past and probably the most profitable one prior to now 10 years or no matter, nevertheless it’s been a problem this previous 12 months [when Mercedes badly messed up its initial designs of F1’s latest ground-effect era].  

“So, I believe it’s simply getting us again to the place we belong and working on all cylinders, which you’re seeing Pink Bull doing.”  

“It’s not about redemption. We all know that [the 2021 Abu Dhabi GP] is prior to now” Lewis Hamilton

However Hamilton insisted that concerning his 2021 loss, on which he had vowed in early 2022 that “if you happen to suppose what you noticed [in 2021] was my finest, wait till you see this 12 months” earlier than Mercedes’ W13 automobile turned out to be removed from the main tempo, that he’s “not likely a revenge particular person”. 

“It’s not about redemption,” he added. 

“We all know that’s prior to now. There’s nothing you are able to do in regards to the previous, however what we will do is figure tougher, be extra exact and be higher transferring ahead, and I actually consider that with this crew, we will win extra world championships and extra races collectively.   

“That’s the place all my vitality goes.” 

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes with Tom Brady

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes with Tom Brady

Photograph by: Mercedes-Benz

Hamilton can be 40 when his newest Mercedes deal expires, which naturally turns pondering in the direction of precisely how he galvanises that vitality. 

Specifically, he takes inspiration from NFL legend Tom Brady, who performed in 23 consecutive seasons till he retired earlier this 12 months aged 45. 

The pair have met – they performed golf collectively forward of the inaugural Miami GP in 2022 – and share a selected strategy to their eating regimen and health regimes to proceed performing as properly of their later careers as they did after they arrived at a excessive degree of their respective championships of their early 20s. 

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Hamilton is vegan, whereas Brady, who is known for his strict strategy to eating regimen to the extent he consumed avocado-flavoured ice cream and by no means ate strawberries, highlights the significance of consuming a majority plant-based eating regimen in how he was capable of play for therefore lengthy in bodily demanding sport such because the NFL. 

“I believe I have a look at individuals like Tom Brady, who’s such an unbelievable athlete and has proven what could be performed at present [compared to past sporting eras],” stated Hamilton. 

“He’s the actual function mannequin in that for all athletes to have the ability to have a look at and I’m actually lucky that I’ve been capable of converse to him and perceive his world, what he does constantly to maintain himself in form and he’s expressed it within the media anyway.” 

However Hamilton did add that “in fact, it’s nice seeing Fernando [Alonso]” racing and succeeding with Aston Martin, in F1 aged 42. 

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes-AMG, 2nd position, Fernando Alonso, Aston Martin F1 Team, 3rd position, on the podium

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes-AMG, 2nd place, Fernando Alonso, Aston Martin F1 Workforce, third place, on the rostrum

Photograph by: Mark Sutton / Motorsport Images

“He was right here approach earlier than I used to be and clearly took that retirement and got here again and is doing an incredible job,” Hamilton stated of his former McLaren team-mate and title rival, referencing Alonso’s F1 hiatus between 2019 and 2021. 

“It simply reveals that your expertise by no means actually leaves you, so long as you could have that zeal and that dedication, you possibly can proceed.” 

Though he has dedicated to Mercedes for the following two years, Hamilton’s will to win goes to proceed being examined so long as the Black Arrows squad stays adrift of Pink Bull within the F1 pecking order. 

“If it’s not subsequent 12 months, we’ll proceed to work by way of it, however in my coronary heart, I actually consider that if it’s not subsequent 12 months, it’s the 12 months after, we can be there [fighting for wins]” Lewis Hamilton

It’s understood that Hamilton was influential in Mercedes’ determination to desert the ‘zeropod’ automobile design with which it started the present guidelines period across the begin of this season, which was seemingly mirrored in his remark that when it got here to being satisfied of his crew’s future prospects, “it’s not essentially what somebody says, it’s the work that you simply’re doing [together]”. 

“It’s the conferences we’ve been having with the entire engineers, with James Allison [returned as Mercedes’ technical director this year] and the entire group again on the manufacturing unit,” he continued. 

“The heads of all of the departments are coming collectively and simply speaking and actually participating higher than ever earlier than about the place we’re, the errors we’ve made, why we made these selections, why we gained’t make them once more and the place we’re going. “  

Having lastly signed the contract he and Mercedes crew boss Toto Wolff had been insisting for a lot of the final three months was basically already sealed at Zandvoort final weekend, Hamilton defined that “I’m not working in the direction of subsequent 12 months pondering that it’s going to take one other 4 years to get to the place we must be”. 

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes W14

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes W14

Photograph by: Erik Junius

“However I’m conscious that it does take time,” he added. 

“In fact, in my coronary heart, I’m so hopeful that the selections we’re taking and the course that we’re rowing in the direction of will put us in that concentrate on zone to have the ability to struggle the Pink Bulls and be shut and be difficult for pole.   

“If it’s not subsequent 12 months, we’ll proceed to work by way of it, however in my coronary heart, I actually consider that if it’s not subsequent 12 months, it’s the 12 months after, we can be there.” 

General, Hamilton concluded that of his present place in F1 he “positively didn’t suppose that I’d be the age that I’m and really feel the way in which that I do bodily and mentally, and nonetheless love what I’m doing as a lot as I do”. 

This, maybe greater than something, was the understanding within the sweltering press convention room at Monza on Thursday afternoon. 

That if ‘enterprise’ was the theme of the day for its largest information story, for Hamilton his subsequent Mercedes deal truly stays ‘enterprise as ordinary’ – concentrating on F1 wins and world titles. 

“Lots of people keep in the identical jobs and roles for a protracted time frame and simply fall out of affection with it however hold going as a result of it’s possibly the one factor they will do,” he defined.  

“However for me, I genuinely nonetheless have that love for what I’m doing.   

“I nonetheless love getting within the automobile, I nonetheless love racing with my friends and I nonetheless love working alongside Bono [engineer Peter Bonnington, who Hamilton joked is “stuck” working with his driver] and all the blokes within the storage within the crew, chasing that frequent aim and dream.  

“And I really like that feeling of when you could have the lows collectively and have the highs collectively. There’s nothing prefer it.”

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes, 1st position, celebrates after the race with a Union flag

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes, 1st place, celebrates after the race with a Union flag

Photograph by: Andy Hone / Motorsport Images

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