As McLaren's difficult season hit a high point with fourth place in Bahrain, Lewis Hamilton admitted he did consider throwing in the towel.

As McLaren's difficult season hit a high point with fourth place in Bahrain, Lewis Hamilton admitted he did consider throwing in the towel.

Amid scandals and public criticism, the reigning world champion said he recently paused seriously to reflect on his negative image.

"I wasn't 100 per cent sure I wanted to be here for the next five years," the Briton told the BBC.

"There was so much going on. Do I want to be in the limelight with people slating me? Do I want be in the spotlight where I can't even go to go to the fish and chip shop or the cinema and have fun without people taking pictures of me?"

Hamilton, 24, ultimately concluded that driving a F1 car to success was most important, and - despite admitting his earlier indecision - wonders why his commitment to the team was ever questioned.

"My commitment should never be questioned because I'm very committed to the sport and I'm very, very committed to my team," he insisted.

But Hamilton said his questionable commitment when addressing the media a week ago in China was "because I wasn't 100 per cent sure I would be here (in F1) for the next five years".

He said some of the shine of being a formula one driver is now completely gone.

"I love driving the car. I love my job. But when you're surrounded by politics and all these different things going on, you know ..." said Hamilton.

 

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