Lewis Hamilton emphatically rejected “comments from certain individuals” trying to “get headlines to keep themselves relevant” by suggesting he may leave his Mercedes team after their difficult start to the season.
“I wonder how Lewis behaves in the team meetings,” said Hakkinen. “I bet he’s sulking. I can imagine the sulking. There’s lots of complaining and whining.”
“He’s been at Mercedes for years and won multiple championships,” Hakkinen added. “Now that things are not going well, he’ll start thinking of switching teams.”
Without referring to anyone by name, Hamilton made it clear he has no intention of leaving the team.
“I’ve seen a couple of comments from certain individuals that I remember growing up respecting when I was younger, but ultimately their comments are silly and a bunch of nonsense all in the aim to get headlines to keep themselves relevant,” he said.
“I’ve been with Mercedes since I was 13. We’ve had amazing times together, we’ve ridden the highs and lows together. I am 100% committed to this team. There’s nowhere else that I want to be.”
Mercedes have begun the season poorly. Hamilton lies sixth in the championship after today’s sprint race, which he finished in 13th position.
He said he is committed to turning the team’s season around. “Just because we’ve hit a rough patch, it’s just not in my DNA to back out.
“We are still world champions and we can fix this. It’s just going to take longer, it’s going to take a painful year.
“I think, ultimately, this is going to be a painful year that we’re going to have to ride out together with belief that we can rectify it at some point, maybe through the year or even the worst case scenario, at least for next year.”
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2022 Emilia-Romagna Grand Prix
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