Emotional Lewis Hamilton insists he is "very, very happy" with decision to join Mercedes

Lewis responds after Martin Whitmarsh cast doubts on move

By Pete Gill and James Galloway.   Last Updated: 16/11/12 3:50pm

  • Share:

Lewis Hamilton has reiterated that he has no regrets about his decision to quit McLaren for Mercedes.

With Hamilton's time at McLaren almost over, team boss Martin Whitmarsh opined last week that his former protégé was likely to have, "on occasion", regretted his decision to join Mercedes given their sharp decline in form over the last six weeks.

Hamilton, though, continues to insist that he had no misgivings about his decision to sign a three-year deal with a team which has won just one grand prix in the last three years.

"I was a little bit surprised to hear that," Hamilton responded when, inevitably, he was asked about Whitmarsh's comments in Thursday's FIA press conference in Austin. "It's clearly not the case.

"I'm sure everyone has emotions in the team and of course it's quite emotional for me, but I'm very, very happy with the decision I've made."

Speaking to Sky Sports News' Craig Slater after his press conference appearance, the 2008 World Champion made his feelings on the issue even clearer.

"I don't have an ounce of regret, so it is incorrect," Hamilton told Craig.

"What I do have is a huge amount of love for the team [McLaren] so leaving is always a tough decision. These last couple of races, it's going to be tough, but I'm really happy that I've got a new challenge ahead of me.

"I've got to learn, get to grips with and build new relationships with people. Everyone does that in life and I don't know why I can't do that. But I don't have any doubts or regrets about it."

But for a series of mechanical failures on his MP4-27 over the course of the season, Hamilton would have surely approached the final races of his McLaren tenure - and the 2012 season - as a championship contender.

Yet if he feels any envy of Sebastian Vettel and Fernando Alonso, the two remaining title challengers, it didn't show on Thursday when he addressed the press corps.

Watch the U.S. GP exclusively live on Sky Sports F1

Can Fernando Alonso stop Sebastian Vettel winning a third consecutive title this weekend? Watch the U.S. GP exclusively live only on Sky Sports F1 to find out.

Sky TV customers, upgrade to Sky Sports today to get £5 off your first bill. Find out more at sky.com

"It's amazing to see how much focus they have considering how much pressure is on - they are both World Champions and they both handle it without a problem," he commented.

"As for me, I'm happy just to be here for the last two races with my team."

Before he makes that departure, Hamilton has made clear his desire to add a 21st, and at least for now final, victory to his name as a McLaren driver after he was denied that success in Abu Dhabi courtesy of a fuel-pump failure.

Furthermore, it appears he wants to achieve that success by emerging on top in a wheel-to-wheel battle with the two title challengers.

"In the last race we were very competitive - I hope the same thing works out here and we can fight with those guys and have an actual race," Hamilton added when speaking to Sky Sports News.

"Sometimes you go through the season and maybe there's a few times you have a real race with the top drivers. I want to have a race with Fernando, I want to have a race with Sebastian, and dicing back and forth.

"Hopefully this weekend we will do that."

  • Share:


Hamilton joins Mercedes

Lewis Hamilton

Hamilton still adapting to car

Lewis Hamilton says he isn't getting the best out of his Mercedes as often as he needs to and must keep patient for win.

Lewis Hamilton: Desperate to join the ranks of multiple F1 Champions

Hamilton fears for his legacy

Lewis Hamilton has hinted he left McLaren due to fears he was "wasting away the best years" of his Formula 1 career.

Hamilton: Still getting to grips with the W04

Hamilton still on the brakes

Lewis Hamilton has admitted he lacks the confidence to commit to his late-braking style in the Mercedes W04.

Related Profiles

Most Popular


Testing talking points

Testing talking points

Just how far ahead are Mercedes and what sort of uphill tasks are ahead for Renault and Honda?

Team-by-team review

Team-by-team review

Analysing who looks on form, and who appears to be struggling, after the second test of pre-season.

Barca talking points

Barca talking points

Why Mercedes were fooling no one in the first week at Barcelona and Ferrari look to have staying power.