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2012-10-23 10:05

END OF AN ERA: Hamilton bids farewell to a team he has spent the majority of his life with as he heads to Mercedes in 2013.

LONDON, England - Lewis Hamilton has said farewell to McLaren ahead of his final four 2012 races with the British team.

Before setting off to India and then Abu Dhabi, the US and Brazil for the final races of 2012 season, Hamilton made an "emotional" speech to staff at McLaren's factory in the UK.

'ALWAYS SPECIAL'

Hamilton intended to bid farewel tol his McLaren team mates during a night of 10-pin bowling in Japan, only to find they were already committed to a "fun run" with Jenson Button.

Hamilton said: "I've spent half my life at McLaren. The team, the cars, the place, the people - they'll always be special to me.

"The Mercedes building definitely isn't as spectacular as the MTC (McLaren Technology Centre). I hope to bring great success to Mercedes but McLaren will always have a special place in my heart."

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