Lewis Hamilton has announced that he will be leaving Mercedes at the end of the upcoming season to join Ferrari in 2025.
In a statement, 39-year-old Lewis expressed his gratitude towards Mercedes, with whom he has had an incredible 11-year journey filled with remarkable achievements.
Hamilton stated: “I have had an amazing 11 years with this team and I’m so proud of what we have achieved together. Mercedes has been part of my life since I was 13 years old.
“It’s a place where I have grown up, so making the decision to leave was one of the hardest decisions I have ever had to make. But the time is right for me to take this step, and I’m excited to be taking on a new challenge.”
Ferrari confirmed the news, announcing that Hamilton will join the team on a multi-year contract in 2025. The announcement was met with enthusiasm from fans, as seen by the 176,000 likes received within the first 40 minutes of the news breaking on Sky.
It is expected that Hamilton, a seven-time champion, will replace Carlos Sainz at the iconic Italian team. Sainz’s contract will expire at the end of 2024, while Ferrari’s other driver, Charles Leclerc, recently agreed to a new long-term deal.
Hamilton had previously been linked with Ferrari but chose to sign a two-year contract worth €117 million last summer, extending his stay with Mercedes. However, since then, Mercedes’ performance has declined, and Hamilton has not won a race since 2021.
Mercedes confirmed that Hamilton had triggered a release clause included in his contract. Team boss Toto Wolff acknowledged the extraordinary success of their partnership and said that it had been the most successful team-driver pairing in the history of the sport. Wolff also expressed acceptance of Hamilton’s decision and optimism about the team’s future opportunities.
Hamilton said he is eternally gratitude for Mercedes’ incredible support and Wolff’s friendship and leadership. He also emphasised his commitment to delivering the best performance in his final year with the Silver Arrows despite the impending move.
As the new season approaches, with the Bahrain Grand Prix scheduled for February 28, fans eagerly await the start of Hamilton’s last chapter with Mercedes before embarking on his Ferrari adventure in 2025.
UPDATE: COVERAGE WILL RESUME IN FULL FOR THE 2024 SEASON