Lewis Hamilton defends controversial no-show at F1 London event
Lewis Hamilton defends controversial no-show at F1 London event
14 July, 2017, 06:41
Earlier this week news broke that the British Racing Drivers' Club, owners of Silverstone Circuit, formally triggered the break clause in its contract with Formula 1, now owned and managed by Liberty Media.
Former world champion and four-time British Grand Prix victor Nigel Mansell, who tasted victory three times in the race at Silverstone, believes it would be "a very sad day" if the circuit no longer hosted grand prix racing.
Interestingly, Hamilton said he informed the organisers and Mercedes of his decision not to attend the London event before the Austrian Grand Prix, suggesting that last weekend's disappointing outcome had no impact on his plans. I feel great, being here I feel the best-prepared I can be.
And commercial boss Sean Bratches added: "From a formula one standpoint we are very committed to a British grand prix going forward".
The Briton, who will be chasing a fourth successive home win at Silverstone on Sunday, was the only driver to miss the F1 Live event on Wednesday. "I don't know if it's possible to shut down a city like London for an entire weekend, but we do it in other places so it's not impossible".
He's finished ahead of Hamilton in four of nine races so far, and bearing in mind it is still only seven months since he joined the team you have to expect him to go on learning and getting quicker.
As for suggestion that he didn't attend the event because of troubles with Mercedes - the Daily Mail reporting that Hamilton is unhappy with Toto Wolff for attending Sebastian Vettel's 30th birthday party - the Brit says Mercedes understood his decision not to attend.
Hamilton said he did "everything I can to genuinely connect" with his supporters already.
"I do have the biggest following here in F1, and communicate with them as much as I can", he said. And I will try to raise the flag in the best way I can and drive in the best way I can for my home crowd. Liberty Media, the sport's new owner, wanted to open the door to fans for the first time with its festival in Trafalgar Square.
"I've got to laugh at that one, [that] has to be the dumbest question I've been asked up here", Hamilton said in response. What I do outside the sport, visiting hospitals and kids who can't come, that's not reported on.
"Being a home grand prix, the home of motorsport, it's such an incredible, intense weekend". You have to stand firm with the decisions you make and feel proud of the decisions you make, and I personally do.
"I've been really fortunate in the last few years to do that and the yearning and the will to want to do that again is greater than ever".
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