Lewis Hamilton returned to the limelight during the 2022 season car launch of the Mercedes W13. This was the Briton’s first public appearance since the tragic and controversial 2021 season finale at the Yas Marina Circuit in Abu Dhabi.
Lewis lost the season finale to Red Bull’s Max Verstappen after racing Wheel-to-Wheel in a nail-biting season. The Dutchman piped the Briton with a last-lap lunge claiming his maiden World Championship Title, but that would only be half the story told.
The controversial ruling by Race Director Micheal Masi allowed the cars between Hamilton and Verstappen to unlap themselves giving Max a chance to make his late lunge on his fresher soft tyres. Since losing the title, Hamilton went off the radar making many question his future in the sport. Hamilton himself clarified that it was a difficult time for him.
Lewis Hamilton says he “considered retiring so many times”
The 37-year-old opted to shut off completely from Social Media following the Abu Dhabi GP. This spurred rumours that the 7-time World Champion would consider retiring from the sport for good. But with his return to the grid confirmed, Hamilton shared his thoughts on the last race of the season for the first time during the car launch.
“I’ve considered retiring so many times. [But] No, honestly, I haven’t,” said the 8-time World Champion. “Of course, at the end of seasons, you think, and the question is whether you are willing to commit the time and the effort that it takes to be a world champion. I think a lot of people underestimate what it takes to be a world champion and there are so many moving parts, it’s not just turning up and driving the cars.”
The 37-year-old added “But this one was compounded by a significant factor, and ultimately a sport that I’ve loved my whole life, there was a moment where I lost a little bit of faith within the system. But I’m generally a very determined person and I like to think to myself, whilst moments like this might define other’s careers, I refuse to let this define mine. So I focused on being the best I can be and coming back stronger.”
Hamilton will be partnering with George Russell for the 2022 season. The W13 will be participating in the Pre-season testing in Barcelona between the 23rd and 25th of February. The season officially goes lights out on 18th March in Bahrain.