Sports Personality: Lewis Hamilton wants seven more F1 years

By Lawrence BarrettoBBC Sport in Glasgow
Hamilton wins Sports Personality award

Lewis Hamilton says he wants to race in Formula 1 for another seven years after being voted BBC Sports Personality of the Year.

The 29-year-old Mercedes driver beat golfer Rory McIlroy and athlete Jo Pavey to the award, a month after winning his second world championship.

"I feel like I've got another seven years in F1," he told BBC Sport.

"That's the goal. I got the first title in 2008 and now a second title, so the sky is the limit from here."

He added: "I've just got to keep pushing."

If Hamilton continues in the sport for another seven years, he will be 36.

Ferrari's Kimi Raikkonen, 35, is currently the oldest driver in Formula 1, while Max Verstappen, 17, will be the youngest when he makes his debut with Toro Rosso next season.

Britain's Jenson Button was this year on the verge of losing his drive, aged 34, before securing a late deal to race once more for McLaren for next season.

Hamilton is one title behind his hero Ayrton Senna and trails Alain Prost by two. Juan Manuel Fangio is three clear, while Michael Schumacher holds the record with seven.

Last month, Hamilton claimed his second world title, six years after his first, with a dominant victory in the season-ending Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.

It concluded a year-long battle with childhood friend and Mercedes team-mate Nico Rosberg which featured a number of heated episodes between the pair on and off the track.

Hamilton became only the fourth Briton to win two titles, joining Jim Clark and Graham Hill.

Lewis Hamilton wins the BBC Sports Personality of the Year award 2014
"Dude, you had such an amazing year," Hamilton told second-placed McIlroy after collecting his award

It was an achievement that was recognised as he won Sports Personality with 33% of the vote, 86,175 votes clear of McIlroy.

The Briton is the first Formula 1 driver to win the award since Damon Hill triumphed for the second time in 1996.

Hamilton, who was accompanied by his bulldog Roscoe on the red carpet and at times had trouble keeping him under control, had twice finished runner-up - in 2007 and 2008 - losing out to boxer Joe Calzaghe and cyclist Sir Chris Hoy.

But he was not to be denied a third time, finally triumphing at a spectacular ceremony at The SSE Hydro in Glasgow.

"I was really not expecting this," added Hamilton, who was close to tears as he gazed at the names of past winners emblazoned on his trophy. "I never thought in a million years I would be up here standing with greats."

"I don't have a single trophy in my house, my dad has them all. But I think I'm going to keep this one.

"Rory has just blown everybody away, so I'm just taken aback by it. I feel very privileged to be representing the country.

"I came second twice, in 2007 and 2008, but just being there was humbling experience. Back then, I was much younger, so I perhaps I didn't appreciate it as much as I do now."

Following his victory, Hamilton plans to fly to Colorado, the traditional location for his winter break, on Monday where he will reunite Roscoe with his other dog Coco, who has just recovered from an operation, before catching up with friends.

After a Christmas break with family, the Briton will return to the Mercedes team factory next month to begin preparations for his title defence.

Pre-season testing starts on 1 February in Jerez, Spain, with the season starting in Melbourne, Australia on 15 March.

The votes
Lewis Hamilton- F1 - 209,920Lizzy Yarnold- skeleton - 23,188
Rory McIlroy- golf - 123,745Max Whitlock- gymnastics - 17,219
Jo Pavey- athletics - 99,913Gareth Bale- football - 13,747
Charlotte Dujardin- dressage - 75,814Carl Froch- boxing - 11,616
Kelly Gallagher & Charlotte Evans- skiing - 35,871Adam Peaty- swimming - 9,899
Total votes cast - 620,932