Dear McLaren family,
I rarely express myself on a blank piece of paper, but here it goes! Everybody knows the great history of this team. That’s nothing new. However, it wasn’t until I saw the cars of all my idols lined up along the boulevard of the MTC that I truly understood the meaning of becoming a McLaren driver. The responsibility and pride immediately sunk in.
We had a great challenge ahead of us and no time to lose. Since the very first day I moved back to the UK, every single member of this enormous family made me feel at home. Some of you even helped me to find my flat and fill it in with stuff, showing already great signs of team spirit.
I could immediately tell that fans, sponsors, shareholders, management, racing team, hospitality crew and everyone at the factory, were all on the same boat, rowing in the same direction. Fearlessly forward. Of course, Tomasso was particularly good at the rowing part.
Despite a frustrating start to the 2019 season, I always felt the support and confidence of everyone around me and I knew it was only a matter of time before I started scoring some good points. Last season ended up being my strongest year in Formula 1, and a great step forward for the team. Finishing fourth in the Constructors Championship and sixth in the Drivers Championship, was a great achievement. And then, the podium in Brazil, with everyone on top. That was the perfect icing on the cake.
I’ve always felt the passion and support from you, guys. The McLaren fans, who cheer relentlessly in every single country we visit. You are simply amazing. Since the very first day, you gave me the warmest of welcomes and I’m sure we are going to enjoy together the rest of this 'smooth operation'.
I cannot be more grateful to every single member of the McLaren family. And I really look forward to battling you guys on track next year. I’s an honour to be part of your history and all I can say is thank you.
Oh, and Lando. It’s also been a pleasure to work with you, my muppet friend. Let’s finish it off on a high.
Even though this terrible pandemic has put on hold our positive momentum, 2020 is not over yet. And we will be back very soon to give our best.
There will be time for goodbyes at the end of the year. Until then, heads down and let’s keep pushing.