Hamilton Reflects on Career-Changing Decision

Oliver Bearman, an 18-year-old Brit, will make his Formula 1 debut with Ferrari as a replacement for Carlos Sainz, impressing Lewis Hamilton with his rapid progression despite Hamilton’s own reservations about starting in F1 at such a young age.

Highlights

‣ Oliver Bearman, an 18-year-old Brit, is set to make his Grand Prix debut in Formula 1 with Ferrari, replacing Carlos Sainz who needed appendicitis surgery.

‣ Lewis Hamilton, impressed by Bearman’s opportunity, reflects on his own career, noting he wasn’t ready for F1 at 18 and that entering the sport at such a young age could have altered his career trajectory.

‣ Despite the challenges, Hamilton acknowledges the success of young drivers like Max Verstappen and Kimi Raikkonen in F1, indicating a shift in the sport that allows for younger talents to shine.

‣ Concerns are raised about Bearman’s readiness for the race, especially since he has not been able to do any long runs, highlighting the difficulties young drivers face when stepping up to Formula 1.


Oliver Bearman’s got butterflies, no doubt. Come Saturday night, this 18-year-old from Britain is stepping into the big leagues. Yep, we’re talking Formula 1, and not just with any team, but Ferrari. Lewis Hamilton, of all people, gave his nod of approval. He chatted with Autosport.com, clearly intrigued by Bearman’s leap from Prema in Formula 2 to filling in for Carlos Sainz.

So, why Bearman? Well, Sainz had to bow out for appendicitis surgery. That’s how Bearman landed this golden ticket. Despite his youth, he’s not exactly a newbie. Just this Thursday, he snagged pole position in his Formula 2 car. But then, poof! He’s whisked away for his Ferrari adventure.

### Hamilton: ‘Then my career would have been different’

Hamilton, when prodded about his own start, couldn’t help but reflect. “I was 22. At 18? I was dabbling in F3, miles away from F1 dreams.” He admitted feeling unprepared for the F1 world at 18. “The F2 cars now, they’re beasts. Me, at 18 in F1? That would’ve been a disaster.” He’s thankful for his timing, suggesting his career could’ve taken a very different path otherwise.

Yet, Hamilton can’t ignore the success stories. Names like Max Verstappen and Kimi Raikkonen pop up. These guys jumped into F1 early and thrived. Hamilton can’t help but praise Bearman’s skills, though he’s quick to add a reality check. The race will be tough, especially since Bearman hasn’t had much practice with long runs.

It’s a mix of excitement and caution in the air. Bearman’s stepping into a world where every second counts, under the watchful eyes of legends. And Hamilton? He’s watching closely, perhaps seeing a bit of his younger self in Bearman’s daring move. Only time will tell how this chapter unfolds in the high-speed saga of Formula 1.

Albert Ramirez
Albert Ramirez
Albert Ramirez is a senior writer at F1Highlights.com. With a passion for motorsports, Albert brings a unique perspective to the world of Formula One. With over five years of experience as a sports reporter, he has honed his skills in capturing the essence of the sport.

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