Connect with us

Sports

Lewis Hamilton: Why Mercedes F1 driver is right to consider extending career – and the key factors ahead

Published

on

theheute-

Lewis Hamilton has previously admitted he has given retirement serious consideration for several years. But each time, he has renewed.

However, during his recent Vanity Fair interview, he turned it around, saying: “I’ll be lying if I said that I hadn’t thought about extending.” As if the default assumption is now that he will retire at the end of his current contract – which runs to the end of 2023 – but that he’s considering not doing so. It’s a subtly different position.

Fernando Alonso has this year shown the folly of the previous widely-held assumption that race drivers’ performances will invariably tail off physically if they keep going to their late 30s/early 40s. It was always nonsense.

With some exceptions, it’s invariably depleted motivation after the long years of slog which can begin to diminish the inner desire to push as hard as the young charger looking to make their name. Alonso remains hugely motivated, as does Hamilton, four years Alonso’s junior.

Advertisement

If he can retain that inner desire there is no reason he will not be able to access his extraordinary skills as effectively as ever for years to come.

Hamilton has a keen sense of the narrative of his own career history. He sees it in very personal terms as a triumph against adversity. His whole career has indeed been a truly magnificent triumph against so many initial obstacles; a Black kid from a council estate is not the usual starting point of an F1 career.

Even if he had retired 10 years ago with just his one McLaren world title and never sat in a dominant Mercedes, he would still be one of the true greats of the sport; one of the greatest drivers F1 has ever seen. But beyond just his level as a driver, his stature as a sporting icon – in terms of the inspiration to Black culture his success represents, the opening up of the sport to a huge previously uninterested, unengaged section of the population – makes him possibly the greatest of all.

ALSO READ  Why I wouldn’t fight Caroline Danjuma Celebrity stylist, Toyin Lawani spills (Video)

That stature has only been emphasised by the record-breaking success achieved after switching to Mercedes. The stature he had already attained within the sport – his reputation purely as a driver – before that switch, would come to be matched or even exceeded by the statistics made possible by that move.

The events of Abu Dhabi 2021 – when on the cusp of what would have been an unprecedented eighth world title, misapplication of the sporting regulations saw him denied – still sit heavily upon him, as he confirmed in the recent interview. That this should be followed up by his first uncompetitive car in 13 years – preventing him from ‘doing the talking on track’ as he likes to put it – will likely only be storing up that inner desire and motivation.

Advertisement

Will key F1 regulation change have say on Hamilton’s future?
That’s the Hamilton backdrop to Mercedes’ progress since the beginning of the season and its prospects for the remainder of it.

There has been a lot of progress from the wildly porpoising W13 of the early season which was often one second or more off the pace of Ferrari and Red Bull. With quite a different upper body aero concept to those cars, its greater area of exposed floor was effectively a cantilever, making it much more difficult to control. Later, limitations in the mechanical aspects of the suspension became apparent in controlling the car’s ride.

It then became clear Ferrari and Red Bull had interpreted the regulations concerning the mounting of the underfloor plank differently and were able to allow the plank to sink further into the floor as it touched the ground, giving a cushioning effect to the ride.

ALSO READ  Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang: Striker joins Chelsea from Barcelona as Marcos Alonso heads the other way

From Spa this weekend, that interpretation will no longer be considered valid. If, as is believed by other teams, that mounting method would make a 5-6mm lower rear ride height feasible, it would potentially be worth around 0.2-0.3s of lap time. The Mercedes, even though it set pole in Hungary due to a favourable set of circumstances (no healthy Red Bulls in Q3, Ferrari way out of the tyre temperature window), was still around 0.5s off the ultimate pace.

So the Spa TD could well help Mercedes reduce its deficit to the front, but to take on Ferrari and Red Bull on equal terms is likely going to require more development. But the Spa TD should at least put Hamilton and George Russell in position to apply pressure to those teams. It puts them in the ballpark – and from there anything is possible.

Advertisement

But of more interest to Hamilton and the team will be what these lessons mean for next year’s car. The outcome of that process and its implications upon Hamilton’s ability to fight for wins and titles once more after being doubly thwarted (once in Abu Dhabi ’21, once by this year’s car) are surely all the motivation he needs to give him access to his full ability and demonstrate to the world that he is not beaten.

Only with that achieved might he feel in a position to make a call on whether to extend or stop.

Continue Reading
Advertisement
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Sports

EPL: Bacary Sagna predicts scorelines for Man City vs Utd, Arsenal vs Tottenham fixtures

Published

on

Theheute-

Former Arsenal defender, Bacary Sagna, has predicted the scoreline for Manchester City’s Premier League clash against Manchester United.

Sagna also predicted the outcome of Arsenal’s Premier League tie against Tottenham Hotspur.

Man City will host Man United in a Premier League derby at Etihad on Sunday, while Arsenal will take on Tottenham in a London derby at Emirates on Saturday afternoon.

Providing his predictions, Sagna said Man City would beat Man United by three goals to nil, while Arsenal will defeat Tottenham 2-0.

Advertisement

“I can’t see anyone other than City winning this match. I think City will win 3-0,” Sagna told Lord Ping.

He added, “Arsenal will win. Arsenal 2-0.”

“Listen, make no mistake, this will be a tough game for Arsenal. Tottenham has quality players, dangerous players. Son [Heung-min] has come into a bit of form. [Harry] Kane, we all know what he can do.”

Advertisement
ALSO READ  Full Time: Nunez and Salah spare Liverpool's blushes
Continue Reading

News

Volleyball: Offa, Customs win Premier League

Published

on

Theheute-

Offa Volleyball Club (male) and the Nigeria Customs Service (female) have emerged the champions of the 2022 Nigeria Volleyball Premier League competition.

In the men’s final match at the indoor hall of the Ondo State Sports Complex, Akure, Offa defeated Nigeria Correctional Service 3-2 (25-16, 23-25, 25-17, 17-25, 15-11), while in the women’s category, Customs emerged champions, beating Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps 3-0 (25-23, 27-25, 25-21) on the final day of the league.

Offa coach, Suleiman Ajeigbe, expressed delight over the victory, saying the trophy would be going to Offa community for the first time.

Ajeigbe also commended his players for properly executing their game plan and playing to instruction.

Advertisement

He said, “I feel so proud, I feel so excited and I give all glory to God almighty. It has been a very challenging one, but to the glory of God. In the history of the Nigeria Volleyball Premier League, Offa, a local government in Kwara State will be lifting the trophy, this is historical, this has never happened before.

“Offa Volleyball Club came into being to help the youths in my community. I started the club to ensure that every member of my team is Kwara-born, majority of them are born in Offa. It is to the glory of God that I was able to start it, most of my players are playing outside the country now. I started the club in 2010, so it’s been a long time actually.”

Customs coach, Sunny Akapson, said his side’s victory was as a result of hard work, determination and dedication.

ALSO READ  Transfer Deadline Day: Which Premier League players could be on the move before transfer window shuts? Your club-by-club guide

Advertisement
Continue Reading

Sports

EPL: Glen Johnson predicts result of Arsenal vs Tottenham derby clash

Published

on

Theheute-Glen-Johnson

Former Chelsea star, Glenn Johnson has provided his prediction for Saturday’s North London derby between Arsenal and Tottenham.

Mikel Arteta’s side will receive Antonio Conte’s Spurs at the Emirates on Saturday.

The Gunners would be leapfrogged by Tottenham at the top of the Premier League table if they hand Arteta’s side their second defeat of the season.

Arsenal has won six out of seven of their opening games, losing once to Manchester United.

Advertisement

Spurs are unbeaten and just a point behind them in third, with Tottenham able to leapfrog their rivals with a victory.

Johnson told SafeBettingSites: “It’s going to be a tough one to call, to be honest.

“Tottenham looks great, Arsenal looks great. Finally, we’ve got two good teams going into the north London derby!.

‘This is their first big test, for both teams. [I’m going] 2-1 to Arsenal.’

Advertisement
ALSO READ  I’m grateful to God for bringing us together - Embattled Adwoa Safo celebrates 4th marriage anniversary
Continue Reading

Trending

Copyright © 2022 TheHeute.