Britain toasts Lewis Hamilton, a new sporting legendNovember 3rd, 2008 - 7:04 pm ICT by IANS
London, Nov 3 (IANS) All of Britain, led by none other than its prime minister, Monday toasted the sensational success of Lewis Hamilton, the youngest man ever and the first black to become the Formula One world champion.“I think the whole country is thrilled by his exceptional talent,” said Prime Minister Gordon Brown. “The whole of Britain are proud of the inspirational Lewis Hamilton and the McLaren team.”
Hamilton, 23, won in the final lap of a dramatic rain-lashed Brazilian Grand Prix at Sao Paulo Sunday, giving Britain its first Formula One champion in 12 years.
“Lewis is now officially a British sporting legend and a role model for what you can achieve if you follow your dream,” declared Conservative Party leader David Cameron.
Hamilton began his career when his father bought him his first go-kart as a Christmas present at the age of six. At the age of 10, he approached the McLaren team principal at an awards ceremony and famously told him, “I want to race for you one day”.
Less than three years later, at age 13, he was signed by McLaren and Mercedes-Benz to their Young Driver Support Programme.
Motorsport officials said Hamilton’s win showed Britain was the best test-bed for young drivers, and predicted he would go on to win many more titles.
“Lewis Hamilton’s performances since his arrival in Formula One have set the world alight,” said Colin Hilton, chief executive of the Motor Sports Association.
“Nearly half of the current Formula One drivers learnt their trade in the United Kingdom and Lewis’s success brings further credibility to the UK as the world’s best proving ground for young racing drivers,” he added.
Britain’s last Formula One champion, Damon Hill, said Hamilton is “going to be big news”.
“He’s bound to be a superstar globally after a race like that. That’s the most exciting race I have seen.”
Prime Minister Brown said Sunday’s win is the first “of many that he’s going to win in years to come” - a view that was echoed by many sports commentators.
- Lewis Hamilton to zoom in Bangalore Sept 27 - Sep 18, 2011
- Hamilton to McLaren: I'm not Young, and I want to win - Jul 17, 2012
- McLaren must bounce back in Germany: Prost - Jul 16, 2012
- Hamilton's title write-off just before start of F1 season - Mar 10, 2011
- Button signs new contract with McLaren - Oct 05, 2011
- Hamilton calls Chinese Grand Prix win a 'miracle' - Apr 22, 2011
- Hamilton to drive in Mumbai Sep 16 - Sep 05, 2012
- Hamilton must stay with McLaren for F1 glory: John Watson - Mar 21, 2011
- Red Bull dismisses speculation of Hamilton link-up - Apr 05, 2011
- New venues invariably slotted at end - Oct 25, 2011
- Chinese GP: Rosberg takes maiden F1 pole, Force India out of top-10 - Apr 14, 2012
- Red Bull will be open to approach from Hamilton in 2012: Horner - Mar 22, 2011
- Hamilton asks McLaren to prove it can win F-1 - Apr 15, 2011
- McLaren-Mercedes eyeing win at Indian GP - Oct 28, 2011
- 'Move to Red Bull' speculation doesn't distract us, says Hamilton - Apr 09, 2011
Tags: colin hilton, conservative party leader, david cameron, less than three years, mclaren team, mercedes benz, motor sports association, prime minister gordon brown, sensational success, world champion