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Stewart urges Hamilton to retire

NEWS STORY
23/06/2022

Three-time world champion, Sir Jackie Stewart has called on Lewis Hamilton to retire.

The Scot, arguably one of the sport's greatest drivers, walked away from the sport following the horrific death of his teammate, Francois Cevert during qualifying for the 1973 United States Grand Prix at Watkins Glen.

His third title already secured, Stewart, shocked and disgusted by the futility of what he had witnessed withdrew from the following day's Grand Prix, which would have been his 100th start, never to race again.

Now, amidst Hamilton's struggles, Stewart has called on his fellow Knight to follow his example and walk away.

"It's time for him to resign," Stewart tells the Convex Conversation podcast. "He's got music, he's got culture, he loves clothing and the rag trade would be absolutely suitable for him.

"I'm sure he'll be very successful because he's been earning a huge amount of money, rightfully so because he's been the best of his time."

Other than the porpoising issue which has plagued Mercedes since pre-season testing, Hamilton is up a strong, new teammate in George Russell, who doesn't appear ready to accept the 'wingman' role filled by Valtteri Bottas for season after season.

While the seven-time champ scored his second podium finish of the year on Sunday, he is 34 points adrift of Russell who has scored three.

Stewart is concerned that the longer Hamilton continues, the more he risks compromising his legacy.

"Lewis is in that group of the Ayrton Sennas and the Alain Prosts... or even the Jackie Stewarts maybe." Says the Scot. "It's a pity he wasn't resigning at the top but I don't think that's going to happen now.

"Nevertheless it's wiser to stop than go through all the pain of not being able to do what you did before. He's carried the sport well. I'd like to see him resigning now.

"He's now struggling a little bit because he's had a new teammate who's been quicker than him in qualifying so far, which is gonna be difficult for him to handle," admits Stewart.

In his 70s heyday, Stewart was the first of the sport's superstars, the first to be famous beyond the confines of the race track.

With his long hair, beautiful wife and movie star pals he was very much F1's first rock 'n' roller.

Weekend of a Champion, the documentary made with pal Roman Polanski and based around the 1971 Monaco Grand Prix, has achieved cult status and displays Stewart's superstardom in all its glory.

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READERS COMMENTS

 

1. Posted by intrepid, 01/07/2022 19:55

"who the heck is His Nibs to be telling Sir Lewis what to do? Even if his assumptions are correct, sticking his nose into someone else's career is ignoble and unworthy of his record and standing in the sport."

Rating: Neutral (0)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

2. Posted by Chester, 27/06/2022 23:32

"Stewart may be totally wrong or he may be prescient. To me, his results vs. Russell as the season progresses will determine which view is more warranted."

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3. Posted by Willy56, 26/06/2022 14:44

"Sir Jackie is definitely entitled to his opinion but that conversation would be better between the two of them and not on the internet.
To say that about a fellow driver in the media shows disrespect that I'm sure Sir Jackie does not feel towards Sir Lewis."

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4. Posted by pap_pap_c, 24/06/2022 15:02

"Oh to hear the tale of the fly on the wall at Jackie Stewart's house when it comes to what he really thinks about Lewis Hamilton..."

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5. Posted by kenji, 24/06/2022 2:27

"@ elsiebc...if you've ever worked round so called 'celebrities' you will notice one element common to all...the addiction to adulation rules their everyday existence. For Hamilton to retire, when he is not being forced to, won't occur given his platform. Besides who else is going to pay him such a humungous salary? My best guess is that if Russell continues to trash Hamilton's results then that would be the first indicator of a pending decision to either go or stay. Wolff also has to maintain the support from his co partners and maybe they won't be so accomodating! Interesting times ahead. @ elsiebc...I gave you an uptick by the way hahaha."

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6. Posted by elsiebc, 23/06/2022 20:13

"Only four negatives on my comment so far! I guess, like he said, he wanted it to match his helmet color, beings it's a new helmet design this year and all..."

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7. Posted by dejan, 23/06/2022 19:00

"Lewis fully deserves the right to call his own shots. While he has a contract with Mercedes he's fully deserving to drive until he feels like it.

By that logic everyone who has yet to score a single podium this season should also consider finding a different career path going forward. F1 is competition but also entertainment - the competition as well as the side conversations are part of that so this kind of conversations only help the entertainment value go up."

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8. Posted by elsiebc, 23/06/2022 16:51

"Lewis knows where he's at. That's why he came up with an excuse to run the yellow camera bar."

Rating: Negative (-3)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

9. Posted by ChickenFarmerF1, 23/06/2022 16:38

"Lewis is getting close to retirement. He's 37 now. He will never get to having better eyesight, or reaction times. And those factors likely peaked a few years ago. Fortunately the rate of degradation is fairly slow, but it's not zero. And he has significant "reserves" even compared to his competition, but those reserves won't last much longer. As well as, say, Alonso is doing, he still isn't as good as he was 10 years ago. The difference might not be huge, but it's there, and even in a Red Bull I don't think Alonso would be able to hang with V.Max. It's why it really is uncommon to see a competitive driver that's over 40, and most are out of the sport by Lewis's age.

That said, I think Lewis will be thinking long and hard about whether or not to continue, and that will mostly be based on the chance of being able to win his 8th WDC. If Mercedes really gets on top of the porpoiseing issue, and is able to beat Red Bull and Ferrari consistently by the end of the season I can see him racing again in 2023. If not, and especially if Mercedes can't convince him of major improvements over the winter, I don't really see much reason for him to stay. "

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10. Posted by Kristofforo, 23/06/2022 14:36

"Stewart dislikes Hamilton quite clearly from his many previous comments and just sounds bitter most of the time. I have some sympathy for what he is trying to say here, but that being the case, the rest of the grid should also retire!! "

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11. Posted by Burton, 23/06/2022 13:13

"People do whatever they want, "retiring on top" is a very spurious notion. Besides (and I'm no Lewis supporter) even if he loses a tenth or two through age, his racecraft and tyre management will still keep him as a top driver."

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12. Posted by Spindoctor, 23/06/2022 12:48

"Can't quite see Stewart's point here. He's never been much of a Hamilton fan & I agree with @R1Racing71 that to quit now would be far more damaging than persevering with this S**tbox car; especially after all those years of abuse about always having the "best car". "

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13. Posted by @R1Racing71, 23/06/2022 11:04

"Retire??? No no no far from it. Surely he can't walk away from this fight. If he goes now it looks like he's being pushed out and I think he's far better than that.
Why am I sensing there maybe a bigger story in the background here bubbling away."

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