“I’ll always be number 44,” he told the BBC in an interview. “I’ll keep number 44 on the car. That’s my number since I started, so I want to keep that.”
The FIA allowed drivers to choose their own unique career numbers from this season. However the reigning world champion also has the option of using the number one. Sebastian Vettel, who had the number one this year, will use his career number five next season.
It raises the possibility of there being no number one car in the field for the first time since the 1994 season, when reigning champions Alain Prost had retired from the sport. Using the number one has been the champion’s prerogative since 1975.
Hamilton was also asked whether he wanted Formula One to retain the controversial double points rule for 2015. The new champion, who won F1’s first ever double points race on Sunday and has given differing views on the subject during the season, answered with an unequivocal “no”.
2015 F1 season
- How a secret Mercedes engine mode helped pressure Vettel into a race-ending puncture
- Over 100 driver penalties issued in record-breaking 2015
- Part-time racer? The facts of Hamilton’s ‘jet-set lifestyle’
- A unique atmosphere: Going to the Italian Grand Prix at Monza
- The Complete F1 Fanatic 2015 season review
Image © Daimler/Hoch Zwei