Lewis Hamilton’s first reaction to leaving Mercedes for Ferrari: Hardest decision

Lewis Hamilton will leave Mercedes at the end of the 2024 F1 season after 11 years with the Silver Arrows

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In a move that marks the end of an era for both Lewis Hamilton and the Mercedes F1 Team, it has been officially announced that the partnership will conclude at the end of the 2024 Formula 1 season. This decision brings to a close a remarkable chapter in Formula 1, one that has seen Hamilton and Mercedes together reach unprecedented heights in the sport.

The partnership between Hamilton and Mercedes has been nothing short of historic. Over an 11-year period with the team, and a relationship with Mercedes-Benz that stretches back 17 years, they have formed the most successful team-driver pairing in the history of Formula 1. Together, they have redefined excellence, with Hamilton securing six of his seven World Championships behind the wheel of a Mercedes.

Hamilton’s Emotional Farewell

For Hamilton, leaving Mercedes is not just a career decision but a deeply personal one. Having been part of the Mercedes family since he was 13, Hamilton described the decision as one of the hardest decisions I have ever had to make.

“I have had an amazing 11 years with this team and I’m so proud of what we have achieved together,” Hamilton said. “Mercedes has been part of my life since I was 13 years old.

“It’s a place where I have grown up, so making the decision to leave was one of the hardest decisions I have ever had to make. But the time is right for me to take this step and I’m excited to be taking on a new challenge.

“I will be forever grateful for the incredible support of my Mercedes family, especially Toto for his friendship and leadership and I want to finish on a high together. I am 100% committed to delivering the best performance I can this season and making my last year with the Silver Arrows, one to remember.”

His statement reflects a profound gratitude and respect for the team that has been instrumental in his growth both as a driver and as a person. Hamilton‘s determination to conclude his tenure with Mercedes on a high note is evident, as he commits to giving his all in the 2024 season.

Toto Wolff’s Reflection

Toto Wolff, Team Principal & CEO of Mercedes, expressed both pride and sentimentality in his comments. Acknowledging the unparalleled success they’ve achieved together.

“In terms of a team-driver pairing, our relationship with Lewis has become the most successful the sport has seen, and that’s something we can look back on with pride,” Wolff stated.

“Lewis will always be an important part of Mercedes motorsport history. However, we knew our partnership would come to a natural end at some point, and that day has now come. We accept Lewis’s decision to seek a fresh challenge, and our opportunities for the future are exciting to contemplate.

“But for now, we still have one season to go, and we are focused on going racing to deliver a strong 2024.”

As the Formula 1 community absorbs the news of Hamilton‘s departure from Mercedes, attention turns to the future. With Hamilton set to take on a “new challenge,” speculation will undoubtedly intensify about his upcoming move to Ferrari and the potential impact on the grid.

Meanwhile, Mercedes faces the task of forging a new path forward, building on the legacy of success that Hamilton has been pivotal in creating.

As both Hamilton and Mercedes prepare for their final season together, the 2024 championship promises to be an emotional and historic campaign. The focus now is on celebrating a partnership that has been a cornerstone of modern Formula 1, while also looking forward to the new chapters that both are set to embark upon.

Hamilton‘s last year with the Silver Arrows is poised to be one of determination, nostalgia, and, most importantly, a celebration of a legendary partnership in motorsport history.

John Smith
John Smithhttps://total-motorsport.com
Editor at Total-Motorsport.com and all round Motorsport journalist specialising in Formula 1, IndyCar and Formula E.
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