'Not a surprise': Here's what Lewis Hamilton had to say about teammate Nico Rosberg's retirement
Lewis Hamilton insists he is not surprised that his long-running rival Nico Rosberg has brought the curtain down on his Formula One career.
World champion Rosberg, 31, stunned the sporting world on Friday after he announced his decision to retire from Grand Prix racing just five days after clinching his maiden title.
Hamilton, who has been competing against Rosberg ever since their formative racing years in karting, has claimed he was not taken aback by his Mercedes team-mate's decision.
"I'm probably one of the only people that it was not a surprise to," Hamilton, who is in Vienna alongside Rosberg at the FIA's end-of-season prize-giving ceremony, said.
"This is the first time he's won a title in 18 years, hence why it was not a surprise that he decided to stop.
"He's also got a family to focus on, and wants more children, and Formula One takes so much of your time. Will I miss the rivalry? Of course."
Mercedes will begin the process of finding a replacement for Rosberg next week.
Hamilton, making his first public appearance since he was threatened with disciplinary action by Mercedes following his controversial tactics at the season finale in Abu Dhabi, insists he is not bothered who partners him next term.
"It doesn't matter who they pick," Hamilton, 31, added. "I'll race them and I'm here to race. Now the focus is obviously on next year and hoping for a better season.
"As long we're treated fairly, it doesn't matter who is alongside you. Of course, we've got great team bosses who I'm sure will choose the right people to be representing the brand."
And people are wondering who will be Hamilton's new teammate...