The 2021 world championship and the nature of its ending made most F1 fans believes that the 2022 season would have a lot more drama in store, especially with respect to Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen tussling it out at the top.
However, Verstappen’s brilliance coupled with Mercedes getting its design almost completely wrong in the early part of the season almost completely ended any chances of this happening.
Instead, Hamilton finds himself in the unique position of not having won a single race for the first time in a season.
He does have a chance to correct this in the final two races, but based on just how effective verstappen has been all season, it appears somewhat unlikely.
While many anticipated that Hamilton would call time on his career if he was unable to clinch a world record eighth championship this season, the Stevenage-born driver has confessed that he is still extremely motivated to continue his journey in the sport.
Now, Verstappen, who has proved to be Hamilton’s biggest rival in recent years, has also urged him to stay in F1 for the “coming years”.
Verstappen further believes that this season was an anomaly and Mercedes will soon be challenging Red Bull again.
“He has to do what he feels is right and as long as he wants to race, he should do it. From our side, we have had already great battles,” Verstappen said.
“I’m sure that in the coming years, all of the teams will get a bit closer anyway so it will be interesting to see who is up there to fight.”
Russell keen to continue development alongside Hamilton
Meanwhile, Hamilton’s Mercedes teammate George Russell has also confessed that he is excited at the prospect of continuing his development in the sport under the tutelage of Hamilton.
Russell signed for Mercedes in a full-time capacity at the start of the season and has impressed everyone with his consistency.
“It’s really exciting to have that potential of Lewis staying on for a number of years to come,” George said.
“I think he has proven that he’s definitely not lifted his foot off the throttle pedal, and he’s definitely [in] the last few races performing probably better than ever.”
“It’s really exciting for me to have the opportunity to be his teammate.”
Russell is keen to be part of the Mercedes team that was at the top of the grid more often than not in recent years and believes his partnership with Hamilton could see them return to winning ways soon enough.
“So I think we’ve got a really, really great, transparent relationship and it would be great to be teammates for a number of years to come,” he said.