Hamilton says battling Leclerc is “a lot different to what I experienced last year”

© LAT Images for Mercedes-Benz Grand Prix Ltd

Lewis Hamilton says Charles Leclerc “is a very sensible driver” so “at Copse for example, the two of us went through there with no problem”.

Lewis Hamilton praised Charles Leclerc, after their on-track battle at the British Grand Prix, while clearly emphasizing how different it was from what he experienced with Max Verstappen in 2021.

Lewis compared their battle to the one he had with Verstappen last year, when the two drivers were involved in a controversial high-speed collision at Copse.

“Charles did a great job, what a great battle,” Hamilton told Sky F1.

“He is a very sensible driver – clearly a lot different to what I experienced last year. At Copse for example, the two of us went through there with no problem. What a battle.

“We had to have a tyre deficit to get past him. Really, really amazing weekend.”

Hamilton then said he could have fought for the win, but unfortunately several circumstances went against him, from Mercedes’ slow pit stop, to an unfortunately-timed Safety Car.

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“For a while it was feeling on. A bunch of things went against us.  The start, we got up to third then they put us back to fifth.

“Then I lost ground to Lando [Norris], so I spent a bunch of laps trying to get past him.

“Then the gap was five or six seconds to the Ferraris. But I was doing good time, catching them up, I did a good long stint and I thought: ‘Yes, maybe we can fight for a win here.’

“But unfortunately the gap was too big and the pitstop was not very quick. At the end, I just struggled with the warm-up and lost out to two cars.

“It was so tough today,” the Briton concluded.

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