Brit has no plans to retire after winning fourth championship
NEWLY crowned world champion Lewis Hamilton said yesterday that he has no plans of driving off into the sunset after winning his fourth championship in Mexico on Sunday.
His historic title — one which he sealed on Sunday despite an opening-lap collision with rival Sebastian Vettel — was down to spellbinding form in the second half of the season.
A streak which saw him win five of the last seven races while also taking Michael Schumacher’s pole position record in Italy — cleared the way for him to beat Vettel to the championship with two grands prix to spare.
Hamilton, who wishes for a career in music, film and fashion after F1, has spent part of the year delivering mixed messages over his long-term future.
But in Mexico, after driving into the history books, he spoke of his desire to continue, forming a new rivalry with 20-year-old Max Verstappen, challenging Schumacher’s record haul of seven titles and 91 victories, and putting pen to paper on an extension to his Mercedes contract which is due to expire at the end of next year.
There was even room for a swipe at his one-time rival and former teammate Nico Rosberg, who walked away from the sport just five days after
winning the championship.
“I could do the easy thing like Nico obviously did which is to just stop and retreat with these four titles, but there’s more in me and more to come,” Hamilton added.
“We all know how exceptional Michael was and it is very crazy to think that I’ve matched certain records, but there are potentially many more years to go.
“I’ll continue to race while I love it, and while I do think that it would be so nice at some stage just to live in one place — socialising, walking your dogs or surfing — there’s a lot of life to live beyond 40.
“Max is really the brightest young star that we’ve seen for some time and I hope that in his early era I can be a good force and a good battle for him.
“I want to be better next year. Formula One doesn’t sleep. It doesn’t stand still. There is always someone waiting to take my position, so I have to raise the game to another level, and to stay ahead.