After equalling Michael Schumacher’s most career wins record, Lewis Hamilton talked about what the accomplishment means to him.
With Hamilton equalling the second most important Formula 1 record, that for most career wins, there is again a lot of talk of who the greatest of all time is. The Briton says it’s not important to him.
“There’s a lot of talk, in all sport, of greatest past and present,” said Hamilton.
“I think it’s almost impossible to compare people. I think it’s different times, we are evolving as human beings. If you put all the top drivers that have been the most successful in the sport and put them in the same cars wouldn’t that be something?
“But all the talk of who is and who’s not [the greatest], that’s not important to me, what’s important is the journey in this time and while I’ve been here.
“I’m proud of what I’ve been able to do, how I’ve navigated through, I’ve definitely made lots of mistakes, but that’s life, we all do that.
“I think yes you can be definitely remembered for having the most [wins] and that will be something special to have, but as I said it’s the journey, it’s what we’ve done along the way, it’s obstacles you’ve faced, and everyone’s got a different journey and a different way of doing things.”
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While the six-time champion appreciates his accomplishments behind the wheel, he believes what he does outside the cockpit is more important.
“In the past I think life was just so fast, bouncing from one race to the next, one event to the next, it was way too fast-paced a life. Even hopefully when this thing passes us I don’t want to go back to how it was before.
“But what I can say is I’m not done yet. I still feel like I’m able to improve, and am still driving at a really good level.
“Honestly, I think what’s been really clear to me is, yes, it is great having these wins but the more important things are what you do out of the car, I think that’s really where the impact can really be made in terms of wanting to be remembered.
“I’ve never really wanted to be remembered other than to my family, but these results, the journey I’ve had with my fans, hopefully they will remember me.
“I think all of you would want to be remembered for being a good human being and as someone who actually cared for the world and did what they did with great intentions, and that’s all. I don’t think of any other way.
“It’s not the most important thing for me to be remembered as the greatest or the best as I said because I have so much respect for all those drivers in the past.
“I don’t feel like I need to compare myself to them as I’m different. And we’re all different.”
Ultimately, as Michael Schumacher said himself, Hamilton also believes ‘records are meant to be broken’.
“In 20 years’ time, whenever it is, when I’m looking back, I can promise you this: I will not be talking down any young driver that is coming through and succeeding.
“The responsibility as an older driver is to shine the light as bright as possible and encourage those.
“There’ll be someone else, whether it is Max [Verstappen] or whoever it may be, who is going to be chasing the record that I eventually set, I can’t be wishing him… it would be the wrong kind of characteristic and approach to be hoping he doesn’t break it.
“You should be encouraging it and hoping that they live to their full potential and if that means getting to that record, that’s amazing,” concluded the Briton.