It would have been easy for Rubens Barrichello to pack it all in after the Brazilian Grand Prix, but the Formula One veteran is determined to return to the sport in 2012.
The 39-year-old's future remains in doubt as his Williams team are yet to confirm their line-up for next year. The Grove squad are poised to retain Pastor Maldonado while Force India's Adrian Sutil has strongly been linked with the other seat.
Barrichello, who has made a record-breaking 322 starts in F1, insists he is not yet done with the sport.
"I'm not ready to finish just yet. I am really hopeful," he said.
He added: "I feel like I am at the peak of my performance, and I get on with the team very much.
"The only thing lacking now is a more competitive car, which I am pretty sure Williams will have, and I want to drive that car."
It was an emotional weekend for the Brazilian as the build-up to his home race at Interlagos was dominated of talk that it might be his last grand prix.
"These past few days have been emotional," said Barrichello.
"There was a lot of talk about me retiring, being asked whether I am ready to stop and so on.
"Sometimes I am an emotional guy and I'm proud of that, but I try to be as cold as England sometimes.
"If I think of everything I have been through these last 19 years and how much my father has devoted to me for all this time, it's very emotional.
"I knew on my slowing down lap I could have said goodbye to the fans, but I just waved. I know I will be back.
"There are more options, but the best one is within Williams, and I don't need a big contract.
"I just need something that tells me I am driving next year in a competitive car. I'm not asking for any favours and I don't want to be driving just for the sake of driving.
"I'm almost doing it for nothing already, so the next thing is I will be paying to do it!
"But I deserve the race drive for next year. The team know if anyone can lead, I can do it."
Any reproduction, publication or redistribution of this material without the written agreement of 365 Media Group is strictly forbidden.