GOT YOU! Lewis Hamilton posted an April Fools Day prank on his Instagram account. Image: AFP / Oli Scarff
London - Three time world Formula 1 champion Lewis Hamilton announced he is retiring from the sport with immediate effect after only one race into the new season.
The 32-year-old Mercedes driver broke the news via his Instagram account with a breaking news photograph and the announcement of his retirement. However, the caption read: "Psych Happy April Fools' Day". Hamilton is not retiring as the Briton posted it on April 1 also known as April Fools' Day.
Many of Hamilton's Instagram followers reacted to his 'retirement' with surprise, Camila Riofrio said: "Dude...i almost fainted." Another user, Adalleprane spotted the prank and said: "Difficult for anyone to believe..."
The F1 world was shocked in December 2016 when Hamilton's former team mate Nico Rosberg retired from the sport a mere five days after winning the drivers' title. On that occasion, that report was authentic.
The next race fixture, the Chinese Grand Prix, is on Sunday March 8 in Shanghai.
See more April Fools Day pranks here.