Lewis Hamilton ‘thinking about retiring’ despite ‘huge carrot’

Lewis Hamilton is expected to sign a contract extension to keep him in the sport until the end of 2025, by at which point he'll be 40 years old.

1996 Formula 1 World Champion Damon Hill believes seven-time World Champion Lewis Hamilton is “thinking about retiring already”, ahead of signing an expected multi-year deal.

The 38-year-old’s current deal is set to expire at the end of the current season, with both Hamilton and Mercedes boss Toto Wolff having expressed intently that an extension will be signed.

It’s believed that a new deal would be for the 2024 and 2025 seasons, meaning he’ll be in the sport until he’s 40 years old.

Interestingly, this is something Hamilton has previously been against, with the Brit having said in the past that he won’t race into his 40s like Fernando Alonso.

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“I don’t think so,” Hamilton said in 2021.

“I’d have five years left for that, and I don’t think I’m going to keep running then, even if you never say never.”

Given that his new deal is expected to be a multi-year contract, Hamilton has seemingly had a change of heart in regard to racing into his 40s.

Hill, though, believes that the Mercedes star is “looking” at the end of his career at the pinnacle of motorsport, with him being “one of the oldest guys”.

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“He’s thinking about retiring already,” Hill told Sky Sports.

“At 38, he’s already talked about being one of the oldest guys. You’ve got Fernando Alonso out there at 41. You’re looking towards the end of your career.

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“Everyone knows that as a racing driver you can’t go on forever but he’s so fit and he’s so committed. He’s kept himself in good shape, it’s the mind, it’s whether you’re mentally able to cope with getting yourself on a plane, getting to a hotel, going to a race when you think it’s not probably going to be a competitive car.

“That’s the key. That car gives him a sniff or chance of victory then he will be there but it’s when it gets harder then it gets a little bit more difficult to think long term.

“A racing driver needs a carrot, and the world championship is a big carrot, but the eighth world title for Lewis and that meaning that he is undisputedly the most successful Grand Prix driver of all time on championships – that is a huge carrot.

“I think he came out of not winning it in Abu Dhabi two years ago and he thought, ‘I’m going to get it back’. And I always think that ambition is burning very, very deep inside of him.”