Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton is perhaps the most decorated racer in the history of the sport. Not only has he won as many world titles as Michael Schumacher (7), he has won more individual races than anyone else.

Having won a string of back-to-back world championships with Mercedes, Hamilton was finally undone in the 2021 season by Max Verstappen.

However, the manner in which it transpired during the final race in Abu Dhabi left a sour taste in many people’s mouths. If fans and pundits were left stunned in the aftermath, it is a testament to Hamilton that he has refrained from publically speaking about the race and graciously accepted defeat following the final race.

Lewis Hamilton. Credit: racefans.net

Now, looking back at his experiences behind the wheel, Hamilton got rather emotional while discussing his journey.

This was not the first time Hamilton lost out on a world championship on the final day of the season, but it will certainly be more memorable for all the wrong reasons.

The first episode of Spotify’s F1 Beyond the Grid podcast featured Hamilton. Here, the British driver had said, “Formula 1 has given me a life, given me a purpose, which is pretty special. But F1 has also broken me.

F1 has broken me and built me: Hamilton

“It’s broken me and built me, broken me and built me. When you go through it, you put so much into it, it breaks your heart and kills you when you fail. When you stumble, when everyone’s watching when you stumble.

“Formula 1 has helped me grow and I have gained a lot more confidence within myself. What it has given me is the platform to be able to do things I want to do, live the life I could only have dreamed of.”

While this interview took place back in July 2018, it echoes sentiments that he probably felt throughout the off-season.

It goes without saying that Hamilton would have felt severely impacted by the events on that final day defeat to Verstappen. He has, after all, stayed away from any sort of communication with the public since then.

Some even questioned if he had finally decided to walk out on the sport that has brought him such great fame.

It will be interesting to see whether Hamilton comes back to Mercedes this season with even greater hunger in his attempt to win a historic eighth title.

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