Fresh from winning a sixth drivers’ championship in Austin a little over a week ago, Lewis Hamilton arrives at the Brazilian Grand Prix with focus turning to the fact his current contract expires at the end of next year.
“I’ve obviously considered the next couple of years,” said Hamilton, who will turn 35 in January. “I know I want to continue racing, that I love what I’m doing. I see no reason for me to stop anytime soon. But in terms of the future, I’ve not planned absolutely everything. I’m continuing to work on that.
“I’m sure it’s the same for all of you, your ideas shift each year, opinions slightly shift each year, but it’s crazy when you’re in a contract. It’s almost like I just did this contract, and I’ve already got to start talking about the next one, which is frustrating, because it’s another stressful moment where you get into the room, get into the ring and have a friendly yet intense conversation about terms and all this kind of thing. But I’m used to it now. I like to think I’m a relatively good negotiator.”
Pushed on why he expects the process to be stressful given his standing within the team, Hamilton said it is a simple byproduct of negotiations.
“I think it’s confrontation, isn’t it?,” he said. “You’re always wanting to try and figure out… you’re both wanting to see what more you can get out of it, how you can do things better. There are things that you have to change.
“It won’t be really stressful to be honest, but it’s daunting when you think of it coming up, because also you’re committing to a period of time in your life. Sometimes it’s hard to imagine that far ahead. But of course it’s nice to be wanted. Hopefully soon we’ll get it sorted.”