Superb driving during the rainy Turkish Grand Prix ensured Hamilton not only won the race – for a 94th Grand Prix victory – but it also equaled Michael Schumacher’s tally of seven world titles, the remaining record for a great German. The Englishman has not yet outdone her.
“Seven world championships mean the world to me, and I can’t even describe the amount, but there is still another race we haven’t won yet,” the post said.
“This year I was driven not only by my desire to win on the track, but by a desire to help advance our sport, and for our world to become more diverse and inclusive. I promise that I will never stop fighting for change. We have a long way to go but I will continue to push for Equality in our sport, and within the larger world we live in.
“Michael Schumacher’s record equation shines a light on me knowing he’s not going to be here forever. So, while you are here, attentive, I want to ask everyone to do their part in helping to create a more equal world. Let’s be more accepting and kind to each other.” Let’s make the opportunity not something based on background or skin color. “
No driver in the history of sport has won as many races, scored as many poles or finished on the podium as many times as Hamilton. He is widely expected to add to his tally of world titles – saying on the podium after the race that he felt “like I’m just getting started” – and his place in the F1 Pantheon has long been confirmed.
He is the face of F1, but also his voice and conscience and has used his stature like any other F1 World Champion. The first and only black world champion in F1 in its 70-year history, this year he became one of the leading sports voices in support of the Black Lives Matter movement.
With Hamilton a force for change, Mercedes – famous for its silver trim – has unveiled an all-black car this season in solidarity with the Black Lives Matter, with drivers dressing in black and the halos in both cars calling for an “end to racism”.
The British’s stunning story – his father, Anthony, rigged three jobs, re-mortgaged the family home and indulged his life savings to keep his son in karting – an example of how difficult it is to enter the sport, mainly because of the financial costs involved.
“The truth is that I am biracial … and there are colors that people should read about.
“When I was younger, I didn’t have anyone in the sport that looked like me, so it was easy to think it just couldn’t get there because there wasn’t anybody of your color out there, you don’t see any black people in Formula One.
“But I hope this sends a message to the kids who watch … that it doesn’t matter where you come from, and whatever your background, it is very important for you to dream big.
“You can create your own path and that’s what I managed to do, and it was very difficult. Saab doesn’t even describe how hard it is.”
Immediately after the race, Hamilton sat in his car with his head buried in his hands and struggled to hold back tears.
“Very rarely I lose control of my emotions, but I remember those last few laps and I was telling myself to just keep them together,” Hamilton told reporters.
“When I crossed the line it really hit me and I burst into tears.
“I didn’t want the mask to show up and people to see tears because I always said you’d never see me cry. I remember watching other drivers cry in the past, and I was like, ‘I’ll never do this, but it was too much.'”
Hamilton needed to finish eight points, ahead of team-mate Valtteri Bottas, to claim the title at Istanbul Park. He did so easily, rolling on the Finn, who crossed the streak in 14th to collect zero points.
Driving with the same vehicle as a Mercedes, Bottas’ performance showed just how talented Hamilton was. Nobody has come close to challenging the world champion during this amputated season and claiming the title with three races remaining, having won four consecutive races and 10 of the 14 races so far this year.