'Lots of question marks' surrounding Lewis Hamilton's Formula 1 return: Mika Hakkinen

Mika Hakkinen added that no one knows if Lewis Hamilton will return, but he hopes to see him in Formula 1 for the 2022 season.

Lewis Hamilton celebrates winning the Brazil GP. (Image: Twitter/@LewisHamilton)
By Shayne Dias | Feb 3, 2022 | 2 Min Read follow icon Follow Us

Two-time Formula 1 world champion Mika Hakkinen believes there are a ‘lot of question marks’ over whether or not Lewis Hamilton will return to the sport in 2022.

Hakkinen added that no one knows if Hamilton will return, but he hopes to see him racing next year.

“Lewis’ journey in Formula 1 has been really long and there are so many elements which will come into his opinion as to whether to continue,” Hakkinen told Sky Sports F1.

“Lewis has the confidence. He has been winning, he has been on the top of the podium, and everyone has been looking at him like, ‘wow, you are great’.

“He is thinking it must continue this way, so this will be a very interesting year for him.”

Speculation over Hamilton’s future in F1 have been intense ever since the end of the Abu Dhabi GP in 2021. The season finale saw Max Verstappen controversially clinch the world driver’s championship.

And after the race, Hamilton had said “we’ll see about next year” when giving his mandatory post-race TV interview.

Since then, the seven-time world champion has maintained radio silence in the media and on social media too.

He did recently appear in a video on Mercedes’ Weibo account. But aside from that, he’s been coy on his future.

Hamilton will find inferior car ‘hard to accept’ – Mika Hakkinen

The belief among insiders in the sport is that Hamilton and Mercedes are waiting for the FIA investigation to conclude before making a call.

Motorsport’s governing body had promised to look into the controversial calls made during the Abu Dhabi GP. They had also aimed to make concrete change to the way the sport was run.

But with the investigation yet to conclude, Hamilton has not yet committed to honouring his two-year deal with Mercedes.

For his part, Hakkinen also believes that Hamilton might not stay in F1 for much longer – especially if the 2022 car is uncompetitive.

After all, the new regulations can be a game-changer of sorts. History shows that a sweeping change like this can often lead to a shake-up of the order.

“The regulations in Formula 1 have dramatically changed. It will be a completely new machine and the chances are the designers might not find an optimum machine. If that happens to Lewis it will be really hard for him to accept.

“If you have been at the top of the mountain and suddenly you have to climb back up the mountain because you don’t have the best car, it will be emotional for him to control.

“There are a lot of question marks surrounding Lewis. We don’t know whether he is coming back, but let’s hope he is.”