Lewis Hamilton: 2022 'adversity' has 'encouraged me to stay longer' in F1

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Lewis Hamilton says the "adversity" he and Mercedes have faced in 2022 has "encouraged" him to extend his Formula 1 career.

The seven-time world champion is in the midst of the longest winless streak in his 15-year F1 career, with last year's Saudi Arabian Grand Prix the last time he stood on the top step.

Hamilton is also facing the prospect of going a full season without a victory for the first time in F1 and could score his lowest ever finish in the Drivers' standings, currently sitting in P6.

Even so, asked how he views Mercedes' difficult 2022, the 37-year-old continues to take the positives.

“I look at it as a bit of adversity and I think that’s where you can really gain strength," he told Sky Sports.

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“I think we’ve gained a lot of strength in depth. When you are winning all the time it’s a wonderful thing but you don’t gain a lot when you win.

“There are six races [left] so there’s six opportunities and we will try to get a win, but if we don’t do well I don’t think it’s the end of the world.

“We will get back to the top.”

And Hamilton is committing himself to be part of that process, as he offered a strong hint that he'll extend his current contract that ends at the end of 2023.

“Definitely because it’s going to take longer than one year,” he told RACER.

“I think if we had won last year and then win again this year, definitely life would be in a different place and you’d be on a different course.

“I love that it’s gone through a phase even harder and we’ve got to pull through that thick slog and get to the point where we are a little bit lighter and we’re floating a little bit more. So yeah, I would say that it’s encouraged me to stay longer.

“Plus I’m feeling fit, I’m finding ways of feeling better physically. The mental challenge is a consistent thing and that will always be the case because that’s how it is for us athletes because we’re on the edge.

“But right now, where I am in life, I’m really grateful for the opportunity I have here. I like to think I still deserve a place here, and there is lots of work to do.”

And F1 motorsport boss Ross Brawn drew a comparison to Michael Schumacher's decision to return to F1 in 2010 at the German manufacturer.

“You can compare Lewis’ situation a bit with Michael’s comeback with Mercedes," he told F1-Insider.com.

Schumacher 2010

“As a driver, you always have to decide whether you want to be part of the solution or part of the problem.

“Michael redefined his role back then, so he was part of the solution and helped build the team that would go on to win eight straight Constructors’ titles.

“He sacrificed himself for the future of the team, so to speak, and played a key role in laying the foundation for its success.”