Lewis Hamilton is a seven-time Formula 1 champion.
Hamilton tied Michael Schumacher for the most Formula 1 titles of all time with an impeccable drive in the wet at the Turkish Grand Prix. Hamilton, who started sixth, somehow drove over 50 laps on a set of intermediate tires and ended up easily beating Sergio Perez, Sebastian Vettel and the rest of the Formula 1 field.
Hamilton’s Mercedes teammate Valtteri Bottas had to beat Hamilton by eight points to keep the title race alive. But Bottas spun twice on the opening lap and had a miserable day. He finished 14th.
The Mercedes team didn’t seem to have the outright pace of Red Bull Racing and even Racing Point in the wet conditions over the weekend. But Hamilton’s excellence and his tire strategy was too good for anyone else to overcome.
‘Let’s be more accepting and kinder to each other’
Hamilton, 36, has been at the forefront of the push for racial and social justice in 2020. He routinely wears a shirt that says “Black Lives Matter” before races and even honored Breonna Taylor, an unarmed black woman killed by police in Kentucky, with a shirt after the race.
Hamilton said after the race that he wanted his excellence in Formula 1 to be an example to all kids out there that nothing is impossible. And he also wanted to use his platform to ask the world to be more kind and accepting of one another.
“This year I’ve been driven not just by my desire to win on the track, but by a desire to help push our sport and our world to become more diverse and inclusive. I promise you I am not going to stop fighting for change. We have a long way to go but I will continue to push for equality within our sport and within the greater world we live in.”
Equaling Michael Schumacher’s record puts a spotlight on me that I know won’t be here forever. So, while you’re here, paying attention, I want to ask everyone to do their part in helping to create a more equal world. Let’s be more accepting and kinder to each other. Let’s make it so that opportunity is not something that is dependent on background or skin color.
Nothing is impossible. A driving force for me this year has been set an example for the next generation, to never give up on your dreams. I was told by many that my dream was impossible, yet here I am. I want you to know that you can do it too. Never give up, keep fighting and let’s keep rising to the occasion.”
Hamilton’s efforts for racial and social justice are why Mercedes went away from its traditional silver cars for 2020. Hamilton and Bottas are driving black cars in honor of the push for racial equality. When it announced the cars, Mercedes said that it needed to do a better job of having a more diverse and inclusive workforce.
The win is Hamilton’s 10th in 14 races in 2020 and the 94th of his career. He broke Schumacher’s all-time wins record after he won in Portugal on Oct. 25 for his 92nd career win.
Hamilton could end up at 97 wins before the season is over. F1 races twice in Bahrain and once in Abu Dhabi before the end of the 2020 season.
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Nick Bromberg is a writer for Yahoo Sports.
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