Lewis Hamilton says he ‘has plenty of fuel in the tank’ to continue racing in Formula 1, after scoring his best result of the 2022 season so far by finishing second in the French Grand Prix on Sunday.
The race at Le Castellet was Hamilton’s 300th since joining F1 in 2007, with only five other drivers having enjoyed such long careers in the top tier of motorsport.
The 37-year-old has raced against all of fellow ‘300 club’ members Michael Schumacher, Rubens Barrichello, Kimi Raikkonen, Jenson Button and Fernando Alonso in his time with McLaren and latterly Mercedes on his way to becoming the most successful driver in the history of the sport.
The 2022 campaign hasn’t worked out as planned for Hamilton, as he and team-mate George Russell have been unable to challenge for race victories with Mercedes off the pace of front runners Red Bull and Ferrari. But the Silver Arrows have steadily improved as the campaign has gone on, with Hamilton earning four consecutive podiums in the past four races, including a very impressive second in the south of France on Sunday.
Before the race began, Mercedes team principal said that Hamilton should be aiming to compete in another 100 races.
‘We talked a few weeks ago about how long our partnership can go, and the number that was discussed was five to ten years, so I think we can get to 400 [races]!,’ the Austrian said with a laugh. ‘Someone once said you have not just got to win the eighth [title], so why not ten?’
Hamilton, meanwhile, says he is not thinking about ending his career any time soon.
‘I firstly just want to be grateful to get to this point,’ the seven-time world champion said. ‘I’m still fresh and still feel I’ve got plenty of fuel left in the tank. Of course I want to get back to winning ways and that’s going to take time. I’m sure we’ll sit down at some stage and talk about the future.’
As well as winning more championships than any other driver except Schumacher, Hamilton has been working hard off track to improve the diversity of F1, including setting up the Hamilton Commission in order to create more opportunity for young black people in STEM subjects and motorsport.
The impact of that work is something which also encourages Hamilton to continue.
‘I’m enjoying what I’m doing, and feel really proud working with this incredible group of people,’ he added. ‘I’m also enjoying working with the sport more than ever. We’ve got some great people leading the sport, we’re having great conversations about the direction we’re going in.’
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