Lewis Hamilton has admitted that he doesn’t want to miss out on life experiences because of his time spent in Formula 1 and the prospect of quitting the sport has become somewhat of a personal dilemma.
While it’s highly likely that Hamilton and the Mercedes AMG Petronas Formula One Team will agree on a new contract for 2019 and beyond, the four-time world champion has confessed that he is thinking about leaving the sport.
Speaking at an event for selected media, Hamilton told motorsport.com: “It’s like the weather. It’s about trying to find the balance.”
“I’ve currently got another year with the team and I do want to continue. But, I’m at that point where there’s that question.”
It’s been known for a long time that Hamilton enjoys his time away from the race track but he admits to feeling conflicted, knowing that if he were to leave Formula 1, he would miss it.
“You can’t come back to F1. Whatever happens, you are gonna miss it. If it’s next year, if it’s five years from now, you’re gonna miss it when you finish.
“There’s a saying you stay as long as you can – I’m not quite sure about that exactly, but there is a lot of life left beyond it. There are things that I’ve missed in life.
“I was talking to my best friend the other day about things that I do envy or look forward to, like living in one place, getting a routine, that’s my gym, I have game night with my friends here, my family.
“Each year I stay in the sport, I delay those things. But from 40 onwards there’s so much time for it.”
Hamilton went on to admit that the recent death of his aunt has played a part in his mind-set when considering life away from racing.
“My auntie died from cancer and on her last day she said, ‘I’ve worked every day with the plan of stopping one day and doing all these different things, and then I ran out of time.’ So I’m battling with that in my mind.
“So I do live my life day-by-day and try to live it to the maximum. So that’s what I’m fighting with – I want to keep racing but there are these other things I want to do. I want my cake and I want to eat it. I just want to make sure I choose the right time, but I think I will.”
When asked what he would do away from Formula 1, Hamilton couldn’t point to any particular field but says he wouldn’t mind starting at the bottom and working his way to the top, echoing his grand prix career. He even suggests taking part in an internship.
“I think I am a big part of the culture I bring to F1, where I’m from. Appreciating that more in other locations. Admiring that… The charity stuff I’ve done before, but I’m really starting to focus on the future as my time comes to an end in F1, putting things in place for that part of my future.”
He added: “I have discovered these other strengths and qualities and I don’t mind going to start in a company at the bottom and working my way up, if that’s what I end up doing.
“I don’t mind doing an internship. I’m excited about learning new crafts. It’s exciting, it’s risky and I like the idea of that. It’s different if you’re worrying about pension and you don’t have the financial stability. So that helps. It’s just because it’s exciting. What am I going to do?”