Lewis Hamilton secures record-equalling seventh Formula 1 title with Turkish Grand Prix victory
After he matched Michael Schumacher's haul of seven drivers' crowns with three races remaining, a breathless Lewis Hamilton said: 'I'm lost for words. This is way beyond my dreams.'
Istanbul: Lewis Hamilton secured a record-equalling seventh Formula One world title on Sunday after winning the Turkish Grand Prix despite starting sixth on the grid.
The Briton matched Michael Schumacher's haul of drivers' crowns with three races of the season remaining.
The 35-year-old sealed his latest title with a typically measured masterclass, handling treacherous wet early conditions to claim his 94th career win despite his unaccustomed start position.
A breathless Hamilton said: "I'm lost for words. This is way beyond my dreams."
Hamilton, who sealed his first title in 2008, was adding to his unprecedented roster of records — most wins with 94, most pole positions (97), most podium finishes (163) and most consecutive points finishes (47).
It was widely declared as one of his finest triumphs and entirely appropriate on the day he drew alongside Schumacher in the record books.
He lapped his teammate and only remaining title rival Valtteri Bottas, who finished 14th after a desultory outing, to claim his 10th victory in 14 races this season.
Hamilton came home over half a minute clear of Sergio Perez for Racing Point. Both chose to make only one pit-stop and spend most of the race on a single set of intermediate tyres as their rivals pitted several times to cope with the slippery conditions.
Hamilton’s old rival, four-time former champion Sebastian Vettel, finished third ahead of his Ferrari teammate Charles Leclerc, Carlos Sainz of McLaren and, after a wild and impulsive afternoon, Max Verstappen in the leading Red Bull.
Alex Albon came home seventh in the second Red Bull ahead of Lando Norris in the second McLaren, Lance Stroll, who had started from his maiden pole position for Racing Point, and Daniel Ricciardo of Renault.
This latest triumph gave Hamilton an unassailable lead over Bottas, with two races in Bahrain and the season-closing Abu Dhabi Grand Prix to come.
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Defending six-time champion Hamilton, who bids to capture a record-equalling seventh world title in Sunday's race, was only sixth in qualifying with his teammate Valtteri Bottas in ninth.
Formula 1 2020: Mercedes chief Toto Wolff says Lewis Hamilton's contract 'got really more expensive' after Turkish GP win
Wolff, the man behind Hamilton and Mercedes' amazing run of success since 2014, also forecast that the pair — who are both out of contract this year — would likely delay their contract finalisation talks until the season ends.
Hamilton only needs to finish ahead of Mercedes teammate Valtteri Bottas to secure his seventh F1 title, equaling Michael Schumacher's record.