Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes, Circuit of the Americas, 2019

Hamilton: This was no “easy” championship after loss of Lauda

2019 United States Grand Prix

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Lewis Hamilton described how the loss of Niki Lauda affected him after he clinched the 2019 world championship yesterday.

Asked whether this had been one of his easiest or toughest championships, Hamilton said: “No way has it been the easiest.

“It has been the hardest year for us as a team. We’ve lost Niki this year, a crucial member and a real pivotal member of our team.”

Lauda, the three-times world champion who as Mercedes non-executive director helped bring Hamilton to the team, passed away before the Monaco Grand Prix this year. Hamilton said the season had been an “emotional rollercoaster” for this and other reasons.

“Outside of the car, just trying to remain focussed throughout the year, that is the toughest. I guess only really other athletes who are at the top of their game can really relate to it, probably.

“It’s just a ride, weekend in, weekend out, can’t drop the ball – like I did yesterday, for example. But being able to bounce back from the lower days.”

“Each and every single one of us is struggling with something in life, whatever it may be, small or big,” he added. “And so I’ve tried to show people that from the outside things always look great, but it’s not always the case.

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Lewis Hamilton, Niki Lauda, Monaco, 2019
Lauda helped bring Hamilton to Mercedes
“I’m also struggling with lots and lots of different things and battling some demons and trying to make sure that I’m constantly growing as a person.”

After his worst qualifying result of the year on Saturday saw him line up fifth on the grid, Hamilton was in contention for victory in the race and finished second, clinching his sixth world championship. “Yesterday was something I think that was sent to test me,” he said. “And it was one of my favourite races today. I was really happy with that.”

The season has had challenges on the track as well, he added. Hamilton won eight of the first 11 races but the team came under pressure from Ferrari after the summer break.

“This car has not been easy,” he said. “It’s not been easy for us. We started the season, honestly, going off to Melbourne, thinking that we were behind.

“At the mid-point this season we were behind. It’s been a real challenge the second half of season. It’s been the toughest second half of a season I think that we’ve had as a team, fighting against Ferrari and Red Bull – which is great, we welcome that.”

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2019 F1 season

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3 comments on “Hamilton: This was no “easy” championship after loss of Lauda”

  1. “Each and every single one of us is struggling with something in life, whatever it may be, small or big”

    So very true – respect him for this statement and his comment about “battling some demons” – the view from the top cannot always be as rosy as some believe. I appreciate his honesty.

  2. This year, as a team, Mercedes has been impecable. They built a great car out-of-the-blocks and made sure the strategy was always good enough to win the race even when they weren’t necesarily the outright fastest. Reliability was also very good, especially compared to Ferrari.

    As for Lewis, he’s grown into the ultimate all-rounder: great one-lap pace, awesome race pace, he doesn’t make mistakes or get in trouble at the starts and seems to manage the tires incredibly well lately. Well deserved WD champion!

  3. Music please maestro.
    Lush corny strings if you will, Mantovani, Mancini, Abba, Cilla Black, Sound of Music, etc etc
    [I know I’ve missed out someone…]

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