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Hamilton faced "difficult winter" amid F1 management upheaval for 2024

Lewis Hamilton says a period of upheaval over December and January led to a "difficult winter" amid the reshaping of his Formula 1 management team for 2024.

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes-AMG

Photo by: Sam Bloxham / Motorsport Images

The seven-time champion split with previous manager Penni Thow after three years on the books at her talent advisory firm Copper, and instead returned to working with long-time friend and ex-racer Marc Hynes.

Hamilton explained that his split with Thow's company was an amicable one, having come to the conclusion to go his own way after "a lot of deep thought" over the winter.

In reuniting with Hynes, who worked as a driver coach for Hamilton in his formative years in F3 and Formula Renault, he explained that he was in the process of putting his own team together, with diversity at "the heart" of its composition.

"It was a difficult winter, I would say, and a very unusual one," Hamilton said. "[There's been] a lot of deep, deep thought throughout December.

"Obviously, [there are] things going on with management, which is taking a lot of time to reshape. That's never an easy process, but it's all amicable.

"I'm now just working on rebuilding my own team, I have lots of things that I want to do and I know exactly what I want to do.

"It's about finding good people to add into your team, making sure that it's diverse. That's always at the heart of what I try to put in place."

 Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG F1, celebrates, Marc Hynes after taking his 69th F1 Pole Position

Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG F1, celebrates, Marc Hynes after taking his 69th F1 Pole Position

Photo by: Steven Tee / Motorsport Images

The first test of Hamilton's new management structure came amid discussions over the Ferrari drive for 2025, which ultimately came to pass in a bombshell announcement over this year's F1 off-season.

MORE: The risks in Hamilton’s Ferrari F1 move

After a difficult December, Hamilton stated that the Ferrari opportunity turned everything "upside down" and prompted more behind-the-scenes work to ensure the deal was what he wanted.

Nonetheless, he was proud of the legacy that he will leave at Mercedes, having worked with his own Mission 44 and Mercedes' Accelerate 25 projects to improve diversity in F1.

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"The January was...everything kind of turned upside down in terms of when the option came," Hamilton explained. "There was a lot of time alone trying to make sure you're doing your due diligence and you're making the right decision for yourself. And I feel like I've made the right decision.

"I'm really excited, but I'm excited about this year. I know [Mercedes] is going to win another championship, and I feel proud to know that I've been a part of it, because a lot of the things we've put in place in terms of how much more diverse our team is, the processes that we go through.

"I will in the long haul always be a part of that process and that development the team has gone through."

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