Seven-time Formula One champion Lewis Hamilton has no plans to emulate sporting greats like Tom Brady and Roger Federer by competing in his 40s.
“I haven’t thought about that number, because I’m 37. Jeez, I’ve still got a bit to go,” Hamilton said Saturday, laughing. “So, I honestly haven’t thought about that, and I don’t plan on being here close to that age.”
He has a contract with Mercedes until the end of next season, when he’ll be 38. That two-year deal was only signed last July and it is not known if he'll extend it.
The 44-year-old Brady is widely regarded as the greatest quarterback in NFL history, while the 20-time Grand Slam champion Federer will be 41 if he comes back to play in late summer as planned after knee surgery.
The exuberant and prolific Zlatan Ibrahimovic recently returned from injury for Italian soccer club AC Milan, and the imposing 40-year-old Swede is playing well for the title contender.
Hamilton is F1's record holder for most wins (103) and pole positions (103) and is tied with fellow great Michael Schumacher on a record seven titles.
Others in F1 have hit 40 and carried on.
Two-time F1 champion Fernando Alonso is 40 and the Spaniard is still driving well for the Alpine team, securing a podium late last season. The 2007 F1 champion Kimi Raikkonen kept pushing back the clock until retiring at the end of last season, aged 42.
But with his wide-ranging interests in fashion, music, and his ongoing dedication to environmental and human rights issues, it sounds like Hamilton probably won't be on track when he's their age.
“Hopefully I’ll have some other something to get on with,” he told reporters at pre-season testing in Bahrain.
He is close friends with 40-year-old tennis great Serena Williams, who is still looking to equal Margaret Court's all-time record of 24 majors.
More AP auto racing: https://apnews.com/hub/auto-racing and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports