Hamilton wants to keep number 44 in 2015

By on Tuesday, November 25, 2014

2014 world champion Lewis Hamilton wants to keep his personal race number 44 next year rather than switch to the traditional number 1.

Driver numbers were changed prior to the 2014 season, allowing drivers to pick their own number between 2 and 99 to keep for the rest of their careers.

Having run the number 1 throughout the season, outgoing world champion Sebastian Vettel will now revert to his chosen number 5 to take to Ferrari in 2015.

Mercedes' Hamilton has run 44, and even has the number tattooed behind his right ear.

"44 is my number," the Briton said this week, after securing his second career drivers' title last weekend in Abu Dhabi. "I won my first championship with 44 in karting so I'll ask the team if I can keep it on my car now. Whether the 1 is on my car or not is not important to me."

Several MotoGP riders have stuck with their regular numbers after winning titles, such as Valentino Rossi and Marc Marquez, the latter running with the number 93 after claiming his second championship.

If Hamilton is granted his request to use the number 44 in 2015, it would mark the first time since 1994 that the number 1 did not feature in Formula 1. In that season it was not used as Alain Prost retired after claiming the 1993 world title.

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