Sir Lewis Hamilton has affirmed that Sebastian Vettel’s announcement of his retirement has not given him any ideas.
The 35-year-old confirmed on his new Instagram account on Thursday that he is set to leave Formula 1 at the end of the season and pursue his alternative ambitions, which include environmental sustainability.
Vettel walks away with four world championships under his belt, as well as 53 race wins, and some of the most memorable moments in recent memory.
Instantly springing to mind are his celebrations after the Indian Grand Prix in 2013, as well as his first Ferrari win in Malaysia in 2015, and these iconic moments will live in the memory for years after his retirement.
While watching his good friend and colleague leave does not elicit any thoughts of his own about retiring, Hamilton is starting to realise that the drivers of his generation are now at the stage when they are starting to call it a day.
“It’s a reminder that I’m in that part of my career that people that I came up with, and have raced with for so long, will start to stop,” he said, quoted by GPFans.
“Before you know it, Fernando will not be here and then…who is there after that? I’ll be the oldest, but no, it’s not made me think about that.”
Right now, the seven-time champion’s focus is on developing the W13 into a winning car having been on the podium in all of the last four races.
“Honestly, I’m thinking about how I can improve this car,” explained Hamilton.
“I’m thinking about what the steps are that I need to take to get this team winning again, what is the roadmap to winning another world championship.”
Beyond that, his ulterior motives of making the world a better place for all continue to ignite the flame.
“[I’m thinking] what are the steps that we need to have everyone aligned in this sport to do more to start truly reflecting the work that we are trying to do in terms of diversity, I’m thinking of all of those things,” affirmed Hamilton.
“When I talk about fuel left in the tank, I’m still fighting for all of those things and I still feel I’ve got plenty to go with that.”
Hamilton is also determined to make sure that, when he leaves, it is because he quit the sport, not because the sport quit him.
“More likely than not, when I stop, I will still have fuel in the tank,” he stated.
“I don’t think I will go until I’m completely burnt out and have nothing left but hopefully that’s a while off.”
Hamilton’s second-placed finish in France last weekend was his and Mercedes’ best result of the season so far.