Podium celebration dream a driving force in F1 motivation

The seven-time world champion has been without a victory since the 2021 Saudi Arabian Grand Prix, the race before that year’s controversial season finale in Abu Dhabi.

While he has endured some difficult times since the start of the latest ground effect era from 2022, he is clear that his motivation to get back to the front of F1 has not been impacted by recent competitive struggles.

He says that anticipation for the flood of emotions that come during post-race victory celebrations on the podium is one of the stand-out aspects that is keeping him hungry to deliver more.

“It’s the dream of standing on the top step, seeing your team,” he said when asked about the elements that keep him hungry in F1.

“One of the most amazing things is being able to look back and having the flag of the nation rising behind you, and seeing the team.

“I remember the first win I had with this team [in Hungary in 2013]. I have a particular picture of 2015 in Australia with the [team] down there in tears – it was just amazing to be a part of that.

“The power of that is a huge part of the drive. Winning the world championship is a huge part of the drive. Continuing to build with the team on the impact work we’re doing, and continuing to push with the team with Mission 44.

“I don’t know how far that can go and I’m trying to expand it, and that means I’ve got to raise more money.”

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes-AMG

Photo by: Steve Etherington / Motorsport Images

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes-AMG

Mercedes is pinning hopes of an F1 recovery on an all-new car design for 2024, having not got its aero concept spot on with both its 2023 and 2023 cars.

It is the biggest challenge that Mercedes has faced since it returned to F1 with its own works team in 2010, and Hamilton sees the task ahead on a par with his own efforts to get Mercedes to the front after he joined in 2013.

“When I moved, there was an excitement,” he said. “We expected it to be rubbish to start off with, because they hadn’t had a lot of success, so this there was just raw excitement. I was a new person on the team, getting into the nitty-gritty with everyone and building relationships. That was a different kind of excitement.

“Now, we have known each other for years and we have great relationships throughout. So, I think it is interesting also from the outside, just looking at everyone and how they are handling the time.

“I think people who are watching don’t appreciate (that) for everyone, they are away from their homes and their families for so long, missing special dates with kids and all sorts.

“You see people’s energy levels go up and down and you try to fill in the voids when there is one, and the same vice versa. That’s what a team does.”

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