Lewis Hamilton has still not made any public statements since losing the 2021 Formula 1 world championship in dramatic and controversial fashion.
Seven-time Formula 1 world champion Lewis Hamilton appeared to be on his way to breaking Michael Schumacher’s record and becoming an eight-time world champion before the safety car was deployed late in the 2021 season-ending Abu Dhabi Grand Prix at Yas Marina Circuit.
Red Bull’s Max Verstappen made a pit stop for new tires from second place, and race control made the call to allow the cars between Hamilton and Verstappen to unlap themselves ahead of a one-lap shootout around the 16-turn, 3.281-mile (5.28-kilometer) road course to determine the race winner — and the 2021 world champion.
Verstappen, who hadn’t led any of the race’s first 57 laps, made the winning pass in turn five, and he held off two separate challenges from Hamilton throughout the rest of the lap to secure his first world title.
Aside from his required post-race interview in the immediate aftermath of the chaos, Hamilton still hasn’t addressed the public — in any way.
Here is what he had to say in that interview.
“Firstly, a big congratulations to Max and to his team. I think we did an amazing job this year. My team, everyone back at the factory, all the men and women we have — and here — have worked so hard this whole year. It’s been the most difficult of seasons and I’m so proud of them, so grateful to be a part of the journey with them. We gave it everything this last part of the season, we gave it absolutely everything and we never gave up. That’s the most important thing.
“I’ve been feeling good — great in the car these past couple of months, particularly at the end. If I’m honest, you know, we’re still in the pandemic and I just really wish everyone to stay safe and have a good Christmas with all their families and then we’ll see about next year.”
He skipped the FIA prize-giving gala, which he was required to attend as a top three finisher in the championship standings.
He hasn’t discussed that snub, which left a young fan heartbroken, nor the potential consequences of it, nor has he addressed the rumors that he might not actually return to Formula 1 in 2022, despite the fact that he signed a two-year contract extension with Mercedes to remain with the team through 2023.
His most recent social media posts remain the images he shared after qualifying for the race on the front row in second place alongside Verstappen.
He shared the same thing on Instagram, where he interestingly unfollowed everybody whom he had been following.
So when will Hamilton break his silence? Will he return to Formula 1 for what would be a 16th season in 2022? The season is scheduled to get underway on Sunday, March 20 with the Bahrain Grand Prix at Bahrain International Circuit. Preseason testing is scheduled to begin on Monday, February 21 at Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya.