Lewis Hamilton has found a unique way of becoming one of the greatest drivers in Formula 1 history, according to his former team principal Ross Brawn.
Brawn worked with Hamilton at Mercedes in 2013 and was also part of the Ferrari team that dominated F1 in the early 2000s, with Michael Schumacher winning five straight drivers’ titles. Comparing the two most successful drivers in the sport’s history, Brawn says their lifestyles were very different but shows what can be achieved with different approaches.
“It’s hard to find anything new to say about the trajectory of Lewis Hamilton’s Formula 1 career,” Brawn said. “One could let the statistics do the talking but that would be a rather dry way of acknowledging his sporting greatness.
“Therefore, I think the best compliment I can pay Lewis today is to say that he has found a unique way of being a great champion. I have to admit that when I started working with him back in 2013 I was slightly nervous about his approach to being a professional racing driver. For me, the benchmark was Michael Schumacher, a man totally dedicated to chasing success and at the same time very keen to guard his privacy and that of his family. Even then, Lewis was demonstrating a truly eclectic approach to his career and while totally professional he preferred a lifestyle that was definitely less monastic than Michael’s.”
Brawn added that credit must go to Mercedes for providing the right conditions for Hamilton to be able to perform at his best.
“Lewis has always been comfortable moving in different circles, such as music and fashion, and that’s given him the energy to develop his talent still further, while always ensuring he is in the best physical shape possible, which is vital in the modern Formula 1 era.
“And at Mercedes, Lewis has found the right support in an environment that is stimulating technically but that at the same time allows him the freedom he absolutely needs. I therefore congratulate Toto Wolff and the whole team, as they’ve not only given him an amazing car year after year but they’ve allowed Lewis to develop and grow to become one of the greatest drivers in the history of Formula 1, certainly the strongest of the last 15 years.”