As fate would have it, one of the most accomplished F1 drivers ended up writing an important chapter in his career at the track where his idol – regarded as the best of all time – made his own name.
Britton Lewis Hamilton won the Japanese Grand Prix, last Sunday, winning for the 41st time in F1 and matching the number of triumphs achieved by the driver he considers his master, Ayrton Senna. The feat was even more meaningful due to the fact that the Mercedes driver, an avowed fan of the Brazilian since his go-kart days, hit the historic milestone in Suzuka, the place where Senna won his three F1 word titles, in 1988, 1990, and 1991.
“I did it at a race where I loved watching Ayrton drive. To match Ayrton Senna’s number of wins is incredible. It’s like he’s passed me the baton, and now I’m racing for both of us. We’re in the same team. That’s how I feel”, summed up the Mercedes driver in an interview to Rede Globo.
Hamilton led the race since the first lap, after starting better than his teammate, Nico Rosberg, who had the pole position. After the race, Lewis payed a beautiful tribute to the three-time champion via his social network profiles.
Alongside a striking Picture of Ayrton, when he was still a Lotus’ driver, the Britton used the word “idol” and the hashtags “The Greatest”, “King Senna” and “God Bless” to express his feelings regarding the feat.
From his days as a go-kart driver to his transfer from McLaren to the German team, Hamilton always wore a helmet inspired by the Brazilian’s, his greatest role model in motor sports.
The British driver’s next goal is to achieve the much desired third title, which seems closer with each contest. We are just five races away from the end of the season, and Hamilton is 41 points ahead of Nico Rosberg, in the standings (each race is worth 25 points).
The next race takes place in Russia, on October 11th, and there is a chance the British driver can travel to Interlagos, in Brazil –, the next-to-last race in the season, on November 15th –, as a contender for an early title.
Take a look at the special photo-gallery prepared by the Ayrton Senna official website with the Brazilian’s 41 wins in Formula One.