Lewis Hamilton was presented with a helmet from Michael Schumacher’s Formula 1 race at Nબrburging on Sunday.
Hamilton came back from the second qualifier and took the lead before Mercedes team-mate Valteri Bottas stopped short of the first round to win the Eiffel Grand Prix.
The late safety car gave Red Bull’s Max Verstapen a chance to try and catch Hamilton, but the Mercedes driver never saw the risk of losing his race, recording his seventh win of the season.
The result saw Humilton draw level when it reached its final win at the 2006 Chinese Grand Prix with Schumacher’s record of winning 91 races.
To mark this achievement, Schumacher’s son, Formula 2 driver Mick Schumacher, introduces Hamilton with his 2012 Mercedes F1 race helmet.
“I’m honored, I don’t even know what to say,” Hamilte said.
“When you make it big to see someone and you usually idolize them, it’s really just in terms of the quality of the driver, but they’re able to do it year after year, race with their team and race week after week.
“Just looking at his dominance for so long, I don’t think anyone, and especially me, imagined I would be anywhere near Michael in terms of record.
“So it’s an incredible honor, and it will take some time to get used to.”
Hamilton regularly batted on questions about the importance of the weekend, and admitted that he matched Schumacher when he went down the alley of the pit and saw the light hoardings.
“Honestly, when I came to the pit alley, I realized I was going to equalize.” Hamilton said.
“I didn’t even count it once I crossed the line, so I couldn’t have done without this incredible team.
“Everyone, will continue to push behind me, and give him everything he has. So thank you so much and huge, huge respect.”
Hamilton got off to a good start and walked wheel-to-wheel on the first corner with Botas, with both Mercedes drivers running wide before Bortas regained the cut on turn 2.
“We got off to a good start, moving on with the Veterans, and we both counted less on the first corner so I made a clear effort to give them as much space as possible,” Hamilton explained.
“He was in my blind spot after that, so I didn’t know where he was after that. Widened until I came back, he did a wonderful job.
“I remember him coming out of the corner thinking, ‘You’re a good man. I’m impressed, he was good.’
Hamilton then took the lead in the 13th lap when Botas was locked at turn 1 and running wide, and would remain at the top of the field until the end of the race.
“I just had to make sure I tried to hang out with them as long as possible.”
“I managed to handle my tire really well, where I could see that he was grinding his front tire, so I knew it was time to push the next two skulls for me, and then he kept the lid cup.
“But it wasn’t a very easy race. The Red Bulls are very fast. Max ran very well. I think he had a place and a chance to start again, but I was able to pull away, pull a nice distance.
“But you can see their speed in the end. We’ve got a serious fight on our hands.”
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