Lewis Hamilton has shot down suggestions he might retire from Formula 1 at the end of the 2017 season.

In an interview with FIA-published magazine Auto, Hamilton is quoted saying 'I can decide to stop at the end of this year' which sparked speculation around his future in F1 and whether he may follow former team-mate Nico Rosberg into a shock retirement.

Speaking to the media ahead of the Azerbaijan Grand Prix, Hamilton has played down the idea and explained it was in line of him having plenty of things still to 'tick off the bucket list' but wouldn't turn away a world title contender in Mercedes in F1.

"I don't even remember discussing that. It's not something I am thinking about," Hamilton said about F1 exit rumours. "I do not think I am in place where I have to move aside for a youngster coming through right now.

"I think the dream for lots of sportsmen and women is to go out on top, but then you can say a lot of people stop before their time. I haven't decided I want to stop before my time at the moment I think.

"There's things I think if I had the whole year, there's so much I could achieve, so many things I could tick off the box, of the bucket list. But then I would look back and think that I am not racing in a Formula One car.

"There's a time and place for lots of different things, and prioritising is important and choosing the right times. Nobody knows, only God knows when the time is right for certain things but right now, I am very very fortunate to be within this time, I have an amazing team around, I have a great boss who enables me time to have part-time for other interests which keeps me sharp."

Hamilton signed a deal worth around ?100m with Mercedes in May 2015 which sees him at the Brackley-based team until at least the end of the 2018 season.

 

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