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Hamilton news helped with decision - Schumacher
Schumacher announced his second retirement from the sport on Thursday at Suzuka less than a week after Mercedes named Hamilton as one of its drivers for 2013. Schumacher had been linked to a drive at Sauber but he said the news that Mercedes had a top-line driver for next season had helped him make a decision after several weeks of considering his retirement.
"The special moment, in a way, is that the team had found an option with Lewis and that sort of helped me find that decision," he said. "Obviously there was an option for me to do so at an earlier stage and I was in the picture when the negotiations were going on, but I didn't want to decide and I wasn't sure about myself. Sometimes in life your destiny will develop by itself, and so it did, without any hard feelings or any regrets."
He added: "I was always informed by the team so I knew what was going on and I'm quite happy that things have developed in this direction."
And he confirmed he could have stayed in F1: "If I wanted to stay I had options to stay but I didn't really [think] about it, quite honestly."
In 2006 Schumacher retired while driving for Ferrari but came back to the sport in 2010, admitting he was still hungry to drive. This time, however, he said it was more of a relief to be leaving.
"It's actually not painful, it's the opposite. I have done so much in this sport that when the battery is going into the red zone - as it did the first time and as it is doing now again, and I'm slightly older now than I was the first time - it is something I am looking forward to. There are plenty of other beautiful things you can do in life, not that I didn't love what I was doing here, but there is a time to change that."
He said he had not made a decision about what he would do in the future and that he was currently focusing on his final six races in F1.
"Obviously we had a three year agreement and it was quite hard for me to keep the motivation and keep the energy to always go forward. With all that I have achieved, it is natural that you think about this more than when you are young. I'm actually very pleased with how things have developed. I was always informed by the team so I knew what was going on and I'm quite happy that things have developed in this direction."