AUTOSPORT has just revealed that Lewis Hamilton will no longer be managed by his father, Anthony.
The father-and-son duo have shared an almost Siamese twin-like bond as Lewis has risen through the junior ranks to Formula 1, but both have come to the conclusion that it’s time to step back.
Lewis has told AUTOSPORT that his increased maturity (?) coupled with his father’s expanding business interests has resulted in the pair deciding to concentrate more on their own personal ambitions.
“I’m 25 now – and I think it was inevitable that there had to be change at some point," Hamilton revealed AUTOSPORT.
"Over the past few years, we looked around to see if we could bring someone else into the picture to help with the situation – whether to help with guidance, or sponsors, or whatever it was.
"We looked at it and I just never felt comfortable with anyone else. At the time I loved my dad being my manager and taking care of things, because I trust him.
"Other managers you hire as employees, but my dad is my dad. I know he does things for only the right reasons, and I can just trust him with my full heart.
"But all of this time we were discussing bringing someone else in, we never quite had the confidence to do it. I think we’re now at the point where we are looking to take that step – and I think it is a positive step.
"I’m 25. I am my own man now, I’ve been in F1 for quite a while now and I wouldn’t have been able to do it without my dad. He’s done a fantastic job. But he’s done that job."
McLaren will oversee Lewis’ day-to-day management until a replacement is successfully appointed.
Anthony will still be involved in motorsport in a driver management capacity, as the manager to Force India test driver Paul di Resta and karting star Nyck de Vries.
Lewis also added that he’s looking forward to having a familiar relationship with his father.
"The most important thing for me is that I have been with my dad working on my career since I was eight years old, and it was therefore hard to go and do father-and-son things," he said.
"When we were at the race track he was always my manager, so we always did business things not father-and-son things.
"What I am really, really excited about now is having my dad just as my dad. I want to have a manager, who can take care of all the stresses and do all the other stuff, and then I want to do dad things with my dad. I want to go for a beer with my dad. I want to go bowling with my dad. I want to go on holiday with my dad.
"And then I want to be able to say to him: ‘How is GP Prep going?’ And I want to be able to tell him about all the experiences I am having too – but as a dad. I want to be able to have that, and build that relationship.
"You see, because my dad has always been my manager, and because we’ve always been working and doing business stuff, I’ve not fully had that relationship with my dad since when I was maybe a kid and we went radio control car racing – and did it just for fun.
"So that’s what I want, and at some stage I am going to have to have a new manager. My dad will guide me and help me with the transition, and even the selection, but as a dad.
"But the great thing is, I am here at McLaren for the next three years at least – and of course without my dad I would not be in this position. But we at McLaren are a family, the guys all help look after me in many ways, so there is no need for us to rush to find a new manager. We just want to take the right steps in the right time."
Lewis Hamilton also admitted that the shift in their relationship meant that Anthony might not come to every race this season.
"While he loves being at races, I’ve told him there are 19 this year – so he can come and go as he pleases," he explained. "He can come and enjoy the ones he wants to come to. He has been at every single race of my life, so that will be a new experience for him.
"I had a text message from him the other day and he said it will be cool to sit at home and watch F1 from the couch. He has not done that since we grew up watching F1 together, so it will be a new experience for him. He can relax and be proud hopefully."
Did anyone else count how many times Lewis said “my dad”? Fifteen!