Hamilton finished sixth in the 2022 F1 standings, forced to watch Verstappen rack up a second consecutive title and edge a step closer to the joint-record of seven championships that the Brit shares with Michael Schumacher.

Hamilton didn’t win a single race for the first time in a season but has told Bild: “It definitely doesn't demotivate me! I'm sure I've had seasons without wins before – that must have been in karting in 2001. Quite a long time ago!

Will Lewis Hamilton ever win another F1 world championship?

“Last season, of course, we wanted to fight for the world championship, but we had to acknowledge reality early in the season. Some results still felt like victories, even if they weren't.

“We had so many successes before that it felt a little empty. We won, but we had expected it. 

“That's weird because it's actually such a great thing. It was therefore all the better to see how happy we were about the small stages. 

“We were fighting for fifth place and everyone was excited. Then it was about fourth place, and everyone was totally thrilled. It was a nice experience to be so happy about a fourth or fifth place. 

“Also the feeling of fighting your way forward, of having the first third or second place, to feel: We are almost there. That's something we've all needed.”

Hamilton insisted that a disastrous 2022, where he fought his Mercedes’ porpoising and performance issues, has given him a new outlook on his previous glory.

“Yes, I appreciate success even more now. After the race in Brazil, when George Russell won and I finished second, I was incredibly happy about this team performance.

Hamilton said about the wretched W13: “We got along better and better over the course of the season, the whole team worked together really well – even better than before. The year was definitely not a disappointment for me.”

Now 37, he has vowed to return this season to again fight his great rival Verstappen who is chasing a legacy as the sport’s best.

“I know how hard it is to be at the top and stay there,” Hamilton warned Verstappen. 

“We want to get back to the top! What gives us great hope is the end of this season. The last few races have shown a clear positive trend and prove that we can achieve anything with perseverance.”