Lewis Hamilton’s simple criteria for continuing Formula 1 career revealed

Jamie Woodhouse
Lewis Hamilton smiling as he adjusts his cap. Barcelona, Spain 2023.

Lewis Hamilton smiling as he adjusts his cap. Barcelona, Spain 2023.

As long as Lewis Hamilton still enjoys racing in Formula 1, he will remain in the series, so says his father Anthony Hamilton.

The seven-time World Champion faces a huge career decision with his Mercedes contract due to expire at the end of F1 2023, the team with which he has won six of his seven World Championship titles, but that has not provided him with the machinery to fight for further honours over the past two seasons.

And considering Hamilton has consistently stated that a record eighth title is his goal, this, plus the ongoing wait for confirmation of a Mercedes contract extension, has raised doubts over his future with the team and in Formula 1.

Anthony says Lewis Hamilton must ‘enjoy’ F1 to stay

Outside of Formula 1 Hamilton’s business empire and range of hobbies continues to grow, so whenever he does call time on his career, there is no shortage of other projects for him to sink his teeth into.

But, while his father made no mention of whether Mercedes are the team which Hamilton will continue racing with in Formula 1, his to-the-point verdict is that still enjoying the series is what keeps Hamilton around, and so it would appear he is not ready to hang up the gloves and helmet yet.

“I think the most important thing is he still enjoys the racing,” Anthony told Channel 4.

“And as long as he enjoys it, he’ll continue.”

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Hamilton recently discussed his Formula 1 future with the broadcaster, admitting that with all the travel commitments involved in modern Formula 1, he has days where he questions whether he can continue.

But, when he gets into the car, even one as bouncy and troublesome as the Mercedes W14 can be at times, picking up where its predecessor left off, that buzz returns, to the same level as his rookie campaign all the way back in 2007, making Hamilton believe he has another five years left to give.

“Honestly, I have moments where I’m like ‘I don’t know if I can keep going’, and that’s just based on there is a lot of travel,” said Hamilton.

“There’s a lot of travelling, there’s a lot of time away from…all the sacrifices that people make in their careers and striking a balance between social life, family life and career, being the best you can be, something has to give, and the other two, which are the most important, take a hit.

“So I think about that often, but then I get into the paddock and I get in the car and I’m like ‘damn, I love this so much’.

“I definitely get the same buzz [as in 2007], I would say in last year’s car and this year’s car, I get in with hype, and then you get in and you’re like ‘dammit, it’s bouncing’ or you’ve got some sort of problem with the car, so it’s not as enjoyable to drive for example as like the W8 [Hamilton’s 2017 title-winning Mercedes].

“But I can see myself being here still in five years’ time, but it can change at any point.”

A P3 finish in the F1 2023 Drivers’ Championship is very much on for Hamilton, who has reduced the deficit to Aston Martin’s Fernando Alonso in that position to just one point.

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