Lewis Hamilton says he is using his frustration at the outcome of last year’s world championship to spur himself to greater heights in 2022.
“I really just unplugged, switched off,” he said. “Firstly, on one side, I deserve to be able to switch off at the end of the year anyway.
“But I had my whole family around me. It was actually a rare occasion where we’re absolutely all together and just focussed on being present with them.”
Hamilton said he “took time to digest what had happened” in Abu Dhabi, “which is, I think, still difficult to fully understand everything.
“What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger, so I put my focus into just training, getting healthy and enjoying the time off because it goes quickly.”
He concentrated on making the best use of another short off-season before the championship began again. “With these long seasons the off time isn’t as long as you would hope for,” he added. “It seems to get shorter and shorter.
“But I think over the years I’ve learned how to be efficient with my time, with my recovery and then with training and building back up both your body and your mind. I feel great, I feel fit. Naturally when you have an extra year of experience under your belt, that always helps.”
Hamilton was on course to score his fourth consecutive win at the end of last season, and clinch the title with it, until a disputed call by FIA F1 race director Michael Masi handed Max Verstappen the chance to pass him and take the title.
“I always feel like through these sorts of experiences you can turn that emotion into strength and into power, and that’s what I’m doing,” said Hamilton. “I’m putting that into my training and putting that into the work that I have with the men and women here in this team.
“If you think what you saw at the end of the last year was my best, wait till you see this year.”
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