(Motorsport-Total.com) – Who is the best Formula 1 driver of all time? This question comes up after the Large Prix of the Eifel , as Lewis Hamilton was able to catch up with record champion Michael Schumacher in terms of the number of race victories. The Briton himself thinks that he cannot be compared with other drivers. He also tells former racing drivers that you don’t have to constantly criticize your successors.
“In all sports there is always a lot of talk about who is the best – in the present and the Past. But it is snappily impossible to compare the athletes, because times change, we as humans change, “says Hamilton after his 91. Victory mentioned.
The Briton would only accept a comparison if every driver who is referred to as “the best” by observers or followers is in the same car in the same season would compete against him. Otherwise the discussion will not lead to any goal for him.
Hamilton: The way is more important than the goal
“We only talk all the time about who is the best and who is not. But that is not important to me the way is important. I’m proud of the used to be I’ve achieved and how I’ve made it this far. I’ve definitely made mistakes, but that’s life like that. We all make mistakes. “
Hamilton himself admits that there is something “very special” than going down in history as the driver with the most race wins. But for him it’s more about the journey there. “It’s about how we used to be on this journey, the hurdles we had to overcome.”
Besides, everyone goes a different way, in their own way . “I think you shouldn’t criticize anyone for how they do something. I get criticized a lot by a lot of people, especially former pilots,” he notes. Most recently Jackie Stewart criticized the British .
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Hamilton’s successes were based on an “unfair advantage,” according to the view of the Scot. Also Bernie Ecclestone joined this tenor . For the former Formula 1 Zampano, Hamilton’s successes are not comparable to those of Schumacher.
The six-time world champion tells his predecessors: “You still have very rigid ideas. I know not why. Maybe one day they will get over it. I have a lot of respect for the past and the legends, including those who continue to speak negatively about me. “
The Mercedes -Pilot recognizes the achievements of Stewart and Co., that was a different time. “It was incredibly difficult for them back then and they remain the legends they were back then.” Hamilton learned something else from this: He doesn’t want to fall into the same pattern when he hangs up his helmet.
“Don’t have to compare me to others”
“In 20 years, or whenever, when I look back then promise I will not badmouth a young driver who is currently celebrating successes. As an older driver, I think our job is to encourage them. ” Whether Max Verstappen or another driver – many will want to break Hamilton’s records.
The Briton is aware of that. And he even wants to encourage the younger generation to do so. “It will other drivers give whether that will be Max or someone else who will chase the records I set. I can’t wish or hope for him not to break them. That would be the wrong approach. “
Rather, Hamilton hopes that his successors will reach their full potential and do their best.” If that means they’ll break the record, then that would be great. “This view would have been today 35 – Year olds also wanted by his predecessors.
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Nor does he deny that victories are great. But: “It is more important to be used outside of the car. There you can make a difference.” Among other things, those actions and deeds will also help determine how one will be remembered in the future.
Hamilton emphasizes that he himself does not want to be remembered as the greatest of all time. He wants to go down in history much more than someone who cared about the world as a “good person with the best of intentions”. “That’s all.”
Why does he resist the designation “GOAT” (“Greated Of All Time”)? “It is not very important to me that I should be remembered as the best or greatest. I have great respect for all drivers of the past. I do not feel that I have to compare myself to them because I am different.”
“We all love racing & share this passion”
To all those who laid stones on his path in life, he also says: “I remember very clearly that they insulted me with terrible expressions I remember teachers who tried to stop me and got in my way, but I have no negativity towards them. “
Whether a former kart competitor or a classmate in Stevenage, Hamilton hopes that his former companions are still proud to have been part of his life. “I also hope that the former drivers and those who didn’t make it see that and that they are successful in their own way. After all, we all have one thing in common, we love racing and we all share this passion.”