Lewis Hamilton comes from one of the most humble backgrounds on the Formula 1 grid today. Lewis Hamilton’s father Anthony Hamilton, who was seen in Portugal this weekend emotionally filming his son’s 92nd podium on his iPad, worked 3 jobs to keep his son karting. Therefore, to have Hamilton beat his teammate in the exact same car by 25.5 seconds proves that Lewis Hamilton deserves to go down in history as one of the best Formula 1 drivers, if not the best.
To some viewers, his continuous winning has become boring, seeing Lewis Hamilton on the top podium each weekend has become commonplace, but his achievements are far from unexceptional. Unfortunately, Formula 1 is a predominatantly white sport, Hamilton recalls people not wanting his family at karting events while growing up because of their skin colour. Hamilton does not have the words “still I rise” on his helmet and tattooed on his back for nothing. All he has done is rise out of any adversity and hardship to the top of not only his game, but the sport’s.
Regrettably, there were mixed reactions in the paddock today at Hamilton’s world record-breaking win. Red Bull’s Max Verstappen, who came 3rd today, believes Hamilton will hit 100 race wins. He said “It’s an incredible achievement 92 victories and he will go over 100.” But unfortunately, fellow Brit and Mclaren driver (the team that signed Hamilton at age 13) Lando Norris seemed rather unimpressed with Hamilton’s record-breaking drive. “It doesn’t mean anything to me, really. He’s in a car which should win every race, basically” said Norris. “He has to beat one of two other drivers, that’s it.”
Norris made a statement on twitter apologising, but he also made comments about another driver on the grid, Lance Stroll, and it is therefore unclear if the apology is to both drivers or one and not the other.
Norris’ comments alludes to the league in F1 coined “F1.5” the mid-table teams fighting for 3rd and 4th, as opposed to the predictable Mercedes 1st and Red Bull 2nd. While for some viewers this may be the more exciting aspect of Formula 1 it should not diminish Hamilton’s talent. The best driver (usually) gets put in the best car, and while there can be debates about whether Bottas deserves that second Mercedes seat, the same cannot be debated for Hamilton. He is the best driver on that grid hands down.