Lewis Hamilton has claimed he will not be “negative” about other drivers when he retires from F1 in a salty remark aimed at his critics. However, the Mercedes star revealed he will always be “tapped into the sport” and stay involved when he finally hangs up his helmet.
But, the seven-time champion revealed he doesn’t want to be one of the drivers who criticise others. Hamilton’s retirement has been the subject of rumours all season after Mercedes struggled to match the pace of Red Bull and Ferrari.
But the Briton has reiterated his desire to start at Mercedes and he still had a year and a half left on his current deal. Speaking to Viaplay, he said: “I’ll always be tapped into this sport, I’ll always be watching.
“I’ll always want to be someone that’s being positive to whichever drivers that are here, good or bad, because you know how difficult it is to start, and how it can suck and how days can be good and how people can be negative about you. I don’t ever want to be one of those drivers that does that, because we’ve experienced that.”
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His comments come just a month after he was called a racial slur by former F1 star Nelson Piquet. The Brazilian described Hamiton as a “neguinho” in a TV interview which aired last November but was shared on social media ahead of the race in Silverstone.
Hamilton has also come under fire from ex-F1 boss Bernie Ecclestone who defended Piquet over the comments. Former British F1 star Jackie Stewart even claimed it was a “pity” Hamilton had not retired from F1 yet to preserve his legacy in the sport.
He was also the subject of digs by Red Bull chief Helmut Marko who also suggested Hamilton should have retired last season. Hamilton made a similar remark in the run-up to the British Grand Prix as he hit back at the range of criticism from those in the sport.
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He added: “In the last couple of weeks, I don’t think a day has gone by when someone who has not been relevant in our sport for decades has not been saying negative things and trying to bring me down. But I am still here and still standing strong.”
He also claimed older drivers should not be given a platform to express their views due to the damage they could do to F1. Hamilton explained: “I don’t know why we are continuing to give these older voices a platform because they’re speaking upon our sport and we’re looking to go somewhere completely different.
“And it’s not representative, I think, of who we are as a sport now and where we’re planning to go.”