“I hope one day there will be a movie about it”- Lewis Hamilton shares a story explaining why he uses 44 instead of the Champion’s number.
Lewis Hamilton has the joint-most number of world titles in his name, along with Michael Schumacher. Yet he never used car number 1, which is traditionally designated to the champion for the following season.
According to RacingNews365, Lewis Hamilton has revealed why he doesn’t use the symbolic number instead uses 44 since FIA allowed drivers to have their own personalized numbers in 2014.
“The number came from my karting days,” said Hamilton. “When we arrived at my first race, I looked at my dad’s number plate, and it had ‘44’ on it, and then it just became my lucky number. I hope one day there will be a movie about it.”
Formula 1 currently gives Lewis Hamilton the option to switch to number 1, as he is still the reigning champion, but the Briton has never opted for it.
“Naturally, I think I am a target, but my race number when I was eight years old was 44,” added Hamilton. “Even though I am number one, and I have been for the last couple of years, and I should have number one on my car, I keep 44 on there.
“So every year, I feel like I’m starting a clean slate and no one’s champion, but I want to be the champion.”
Not a fan of number 1
On two occasions, Hamilton had to perform with number 1 on his Mercedes, one each during the 2018 and 2019 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix practice sessions.
“I don’t like it at all,” said Hamilton. “The reason I did it is I’ve been here for six years, and I remember when the team had number one when Jenson [Button] won the world title, and [he] moved to McLaren and brought the number one with him, it’s strange that McLaren would then have the number one on the car.
“I remember the [Mercedes] engineers and the mechanics asking me at one stage asking me if I would do it. And I thought it would be cool to have it on the car for one session so at least they will have a picture somewhere that they could be proud of with that ‘we were number one’.
“Because 44 doesn’t really… that’s my special number. And in actual fact, everyone on the team, on my car particularly, said to me they’re travelling they’ll see a bus number 44 or a flight or seat number 44, and it’s becoming part of their lives. This is great because it’s exactly how it was with me. So it was cool. “But it was just for one session, and it doesn’t really mean anything.”