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Hamilton breaks silence to reveal motive behind Ferrari switch

F1 continues to recover from the deal that shocked the motorsport world to its core

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Lewis Hamilton has revealed the motives behind his shock move to Ferrari, announced on Friday. 

Lewis Hamilton speaks with Charles Leclerc during a press conference (Image Credit: PlanetF1)
Lewis Hamilton speaks with Charles Leclerc during a press conference (Image Credit: PlanetF1)

Hamilton became an international news story on Friday when stories linking him to a 2025 Ferrari drive began to gain traction. An emergency meeting at Mercedes and a statement from the team subsequently confirmed the validity of the rumours.

But Hamilton was conspicuous in his silence. He went dark on social media, and no statement from him emerged. As reported by motorsport.com, Hamilton ended his silence on Saturday night, releasing a statement via Instagram outlining the reasons for the switch that has seismic repercussions for F1.

The momentum of the occasion was not lost on Hamilton, who described the experience as “crazy” and paid tribute to Mercedes and Niki Lauda. He also revealed driving for Ferrari is the realisation of a lifelong ambition: “It’s been a crazy few days which have been filled with a whole range of emotions,”

“But as you all now know, after an incredible 11 years at Mercedes, the time has come for me to start a new chapter in my life, and I will be joining Ferrari in 2025.”

“I feel incredibly fortunate, after achieving things with Mercedes that I could only have dreamed of as a kid, that I now have the chance to fulfil another childhood dream. Driving in Ferrari red.”

A new challenge

Hamilton stated the main reason behind his shock switch was a new challenge. Having been under Mercedes power since the late 1990s, the seven-time World Champion said the time was right for the change:

“Mercedes has been a huge part of my life since I was 13 years old. So this decision has been the hardest I’ve ever had to make.”

“I’m incredibly proud of all that we’ve achieved together, and I’m very grateful for the hard work and dedication of everyone I have worked with over the years and of course Toto [Wolff], for his friendship, guidance and leadership.”

“Together we have won titles, broken records and become the most successful driver/team partnership in F1 history. And of course, I cannot forget Niki [Lauda], who was a huge supporter, and who I still miss every day.”

“I must also share my huge appreciation to the whole of the Mercedes-Benz board and everyone at the company in Germany and around the world for supporting me over these 26 years. But the time is right to make a change and take on a new challenge.”

A leap of faith

Back in 2012, Hamilton made a seismic switch from McLaren to Mercedes for the following season. A massive gamble at the time, Hamilton referred to the same feeling of faith for his upcoming move to Ferrari:

“I still remember the feeling of taking a leap of faith into the unknown when I first joined Mercedes in 2013.”

“I know some people didn’t understand it at the time, but I was right to make the move then, and it’s the feeling I have again now. I’m excited to see what I can bring to this new opportunity and what we can do together.”

Hamilton also confirmed he remains committed to Mercedes for 2024 ahead of his move in 2025: “However, right now, I’m not thinking about 2025. My focus is on the upcoming season and getting back out on track with Mercedes.”

“I am more driven than ever, I am fitter and more focused than ever, and I want to help Mercedes win once again. I am 100% committed to the job I need to do and determined to end my partnership with the team on a high.”

“Thank you to all of you who have been on this journey with me, you have all lifted me up as I chase my dreams and I hope I can continue to make you proud. As always, sending you my love and positive energy.”

 

Feature Image Credit: Mercedes Benz Archive

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