Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes, Hungaroring, 2021

Hamilton says booing “fuels me” after taking 101st pole position

2021 Hungarian Grand Prix

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Lewis Hamilton led team mate Valtteri Bottas to a Mercedes front-row lock out at the Hungaroring but was greeted by boos from some in the crowd at the end of the session.

The Mercedes driver set an early Q3 time which wasn’t beaten after the drivers’ final runs. The Mercedes drivers ran in front of the Red Bull pair at the end of the session and Hamilton began his final lap so late only one of their rivals – Max Verstappen – was able to begin their final lap before the chequered flag was shown.

“It was an amazing qualifying lap, that last one,” Hamilton said. “I think it’s been amazing teamwork from everyone this weekend, Valtteri included

“[We’re] just trying to push the car forwards, developing constantly, the guys back at the factory just [have] not left any stone unturned. So it’s been amazing to see everyone coming together and rallying up and pushing forward.”

Hamilton said he was not concerned by the negative reaction from some in the crowd. “I appreciate the great support I’ve had here,” he said. “I’ve never actually felt so great with the booing. If anything, it just fuels me. So I don’t really mind.”

Both Mercedes drivers were able to go through to Q3 on medium tyres, while both Red Bull chose to start the race on softs. Hamilton said the difference in strategy at the race start would create a tactically interesting scenario.

“I think the soft tyre is worth something like five metres down into turn one, obviously it’s a long way down to turn one,” he said. “So it’s surprising to see the guys behind us, everyone in the top 10, on the soft except for us. We’ll see.

“It’s definitely great having a lock-out for our team, it’s the first time in a long time. So thank you to everyone back at the factory.”

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Author information

Hazel Southwell
Hazel is a freelance journalist who roams the paddocks of Formula E, covering the technical and emotional elements of electric racing. Usually found at...

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51 comments on “Hamilton says booing “fuels me” after taking 101st pole position”

  1. Anyway, Lewis has more supporters than a sector of booing Max fans.

    1. Nope, not only max fans. A lot of the locals , majority even, made the loudest noise.
      A very diverse booing crowd.

    2. Jeez, booing, so mature.

      Reply moderated
    3. I didn’t see qualifying due to work. Was the booing actually from Max fans or from anti LGBTQ+ locals?

  2. “You may shoot me with your words,
    You may cut me with your eyes,
    You may kill me with your hatefulness,
    But still, like air, I’ll rise.”

  3. Booing a driver is not what we need in the F1. To my knowledge Lewis is the only driver to be booed by the crowd? Or were there others also?

    Lewis did it smart by slowing down but looked a bit silly, RB was not fast enough to challenge MB. Hope to see a good fight but looking at the long runs it will be a bit boring. MB is just to fast atm.

    1. Sebastian Vettel was booed during 2013 season after “Multi 21” scandal.

    2. @ruben @bulgarian
      + Rosberg on 2014 Belgian GP podium.

      1. @jerejj
        Ah now you say that I remember.

    3. at Italian GP usually non Ferrari driver on top step of podium(Vettel at Monza 2013, etc.) is booed on. Even at Singapore GP 2013 Vettel was booed.

      1. apparently in 2013 at 6 different race venues Vettel was booed.

      2. In Italië I can understand haha. The atmosphere is so intense and even when you’re not Ferrari fan you almost want to. Went there in 2019 when Leclerc won, just crazy how they celebrated.

    4. Lewis was quite heavily booed in Montreal in ’19, with Vettel telling the crowd to not boo Lewis but the stewards instead.

    5. @ruben

      To my knowledge Lewis is the only driver to be booed by the crowd?

      Amazing that someone seriously believes this. I guess this place is truly turning into Lewisfans now.

    6. The Melbourne Ferrari fans have been booing Hamilton for years. They Booed him for coming third!

  4. Like football, there’s always a section of the crowd with fewer brain cells than tickets that let the side down. Even Max is getting sick and tired of the constant baiting (I realise that it’s RBR that have drawn this latest spat out unnecceserily). The drivers clearly respect each-other… the media circus and the fans are doing the sport no favours at the moment.

    1. Did they racially abuse him? If they did then its not okay. If its just booeing, its fine (booing the opposition team or player in football is also fine).

      Lewis even said as quoted in the article that he doesn’t mind so its win-win for both him and the people who boeed him. Lewis uses it to fuel him and the crowd gets to express the displeasure of someone they dislike.

      1. Completely agree! People pay their money, so they are free to express their displeasure/pleasure in a suitable way.
        It wont affect Lewis though. Hes been here many times before and feeds off the negativity. Like was mentioned above “Win, Win”.

  5. You would think those who boo would realise one of the most successful drivers of all time spend his childhood years being verbally abused around the British karting tracks; and thrived on it.

    1. Pretty sure they know that, they just want to show their displeasure of him and Hamilton will benefit by using it to fuel him, like he always does. If he can criticize, then so can they.

  6. What do he expects after 14 years of fraud with the help of Anthony, British press and FIA.

      1. Who is this Anthony and how do I get his help of fraud? I want to fraud.

    1. I’am surprised you can get the internet living under a bridge.

    2. A new low for you? Really scraping the barrel now.

    3. Good grief – get help

  7. I don’t see what’s bad about booing especially in a spectator sports. If he thrives on it then good for him and this becomes a win-win for both. He also got booed at Monza a few years ago I recalled after winning a race there.

    Cheering and booing are two sides of a coin. I’m not saying there shouldn’t be limits (like say racist chants for example) but booing is pretty mild in the scheme of things.

    He has criticized a Hungarian anti-LGBT law recently (which some in Hungary would have supported) and was involved in a controversial crash last race that involved his title rival where he was ruled to be mostly at fault.

    We don’t have to agree with the booers on either these issues (if they are the reasons) but its part and parcel of a few spectator sports, even if it is more rare in F1 than say, football.

    1. 100% 👍
      I personally think its hilarious. Like pantomime. However if you pay your money you have every right to express your displeasure/pleasure in a suitable manner.
      As you say, Lewis was only ever going to get 1 response from the majority of the crowd today (and tomorrow) due to the reasons you state above. Hungarians and Dutch probably make up 70 to 90% of the crowd. BOOOOOOOH! HES BEHIND YOU!!

      1. He got booed in Melbourne fir coming third! When you’re in the grandstand with your kids trying to enjoy the podium ceremony and suddenly a section of the crowd turns in one driver for coming third, it ruins the experience and leaves a pretty bad taste in your mouth. There is nothing sporting about that.

  8. “Your boos mean nothing, I’ve seen what makes you cheer. Every breath I take in your disapproval, fuels my self esteem”
    – Rick Sanchez, Rick and Morty

  9. Let them boo. While he wins wins wins. Max fans showing signs of desperation now i see. 😂

  10. Booing fueled Germany eight years ago throughout the whole season at that time.
    Booing fueled France four years ago following the Spa-Francorchamps fallout.
    Booing fueled Great Britain today.

    1. @Dave What Spa-Francorchamps fallout? I don’t recall anything extraordinary over the 2017 Belgian GP weekend.

      1. Does not matter. Dave lives in his own world.

        1. Oh shut up! It’s none of your business.

        2. You say me live in my own world, Erik? You very noob, huh? You totally noob, huh? And your favorite team is very noobs?

        3. “dOeS nOt MaTtEr. DaVe LiVeS iN hIs OwN wOrLd.”

          Killshot done! Hahahahaha!

      2. It’s the Perez-Ocon collision at that race. I was doing indirect references.

  11. Was it Max fans or did this have to do with the lgbtq+ legislation Lewis respondenten to?

    1. Bit of both I would imagine.

  12. Mark in Florida
    31st July 2021, 17:03

    No god likes being booed, worship only please. Seriously what did he expect? You crash a guy out and then win the race. Now you deliberately impede the same drivers last lap to benefit yourself. The whole time you were mopping the floor with win after win and spouting on about how you wished the competition was better. Now the the competition is better and this is what we get, questionable driving tactics and stalling the other teams ability to make a run. Your words say one thing your actions another.

    1. Errrr this IS competition! This is what it’s like at the thick end of a WDC challenge. Do you expect Lewis, a 7 x WDC, to make it easy? To just hand over his title? Lewis is clearly relishing this. Max seems to be coping well and enjoying it too. This is what we all wanted, isnt it?This will be great experience for Max and he has every chance of coming out on top. Luckily Max isnt as sensitive as some of his fans.

      1. Mark in Florida
        31st July 2021, 20:36

        Dean, I’m not his fan. Never have been a fan of either one. Defend your man all you want, its your right to have an opinion. I’m merely making the observation that his words don’t match up to Lewises actions. It makes him appear desperate lately and he is doing things that are borderline unsportsmanlike. You can’t claim the moral high ground when you seem to be the one engaging in unsavory actions.

  13. Golden comment.

  14. Mark in Florida, you sound very bitter. May i ask why?

  15. He isn’t the first driver to get booed and wont be the last. Who cares? Will it really fuel him? Nah.. He’s great at this track, doesn’t need any motivation. I’d already assumed he’d win the race barring an engine failure or crash, long ago.

  16. By the way:
    “Dislike ……. red bull noobs this community is full of…….Dislike max noob austria 2019 lap 69 no pen never something done…….Dislike ……. horner and marko no honor for them…….only mclaren is best of them all…….”

    Now, if you want to call me a sucker, then I’ll respond back!

  17. Or as far more eloquently put by Rowan Atkinson: https://youtu.be/BiqDZlAZygU.

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