Hamilton says he can see himself racing on in F1 'for at least another 3 years'
Lewis Hamilton is currently competing in his 14th Formula 1 season – but ahead of this weekend’s British Grand Prix, the six-time world champion says he’s ready to keep going in the sport for at least another three years.
The 35-year-old is aiming for his seventh home win at Silverstone this Sunday, and ahead of the race he said having a longer than expected break from racing this year because of the coronavirus pandemic has given him “renewed energy” – and could even extend his career in F1.
Given his current contract with Mercedes expires at the end of the season, he was asked if he could guarantee his fans he would be back at Silverstone next year, and how long he might keep racing.
“I don’t think you can guarantee anything but I plan to be here for sure,” he said. “That’s definitely the goal and fingers crossed I will be here and we will have fans here next year.
“In terms of how long I go, that’s a bit of an unknown. I would say the Covid lockdown – whilst it was a negative in many, many ways, in some ways it gave [me] a lot of life, a lot of energy to focus on some other things, and that little bit of time off was really a bit of breathing space, so it’s just given me a renewed energy to perhaps go longer.
“Ultimately I want to be able to perform at the level I’m performing at now forever, but obviously there is a point at which physicality and the mental side can tail off, and I don’t know when that’s going to be, but I don’t see that happening in the short term, in the next two or three years, so I’m definitely going to be here hopefully for the foreseeable future.
“And also, we’re in a period of time where there’s not another driver from my background coming at the moment and I’m conscious of that as well,” he added.
And despite the fact he’s closing in on Michael Schumacher’s record of seven world championship titles, Hamilton says he still feels he has to justify his place in the sport with his performances.
“I want to earn my position here and I feel like every year I come back it’s not a given, just because I’ve got world championships under my belt. I think you still have to earn the right to be here in terms of how you perform and continuing to deliver, so my goal is to continue to deliver for as long as I can.
“So I do see myself going for at least another three years,” he concluded.