Hamil­ton’s life in the fast lane will not harm ti­tle chances

The Herald - Herald Sport - - SWIMMING, ATHLETICS - PHILIP DUN­CAN

LEWIS HAMIL­TON “is not stupid” and does not need to change his hec­tic life­style in or­der to get his cham­pi­onship chal­lenge back on track, Sir Stir­ling Moss has claimed.

Moss, the 86-year-old mo­tor rac­ing leg­end, who once con­fessed to cel­e­brat­ing his 16 grands prix vic­to­ries by “chas­ing crum­pet”, also hailed For­mula One as the “most ex­cit­ing it has ever been” and in­sisted Hamil­ton can still claim his fourth cham­pi­onship this sea­son.

Hamil­ton’s fran­tic life­style away from the cir­cuit shows no signs of slow­ing down. In­deed the Bri­ton courted crit­i­cism ear­lier this month for up­load­ing a num­ber of videos from a Miami night­club in which he ap­peared to be smok­ing a shisha pipe and drink­ing tequila from a bot­tle.

Nat­u­rally, cyn­ics have sug­gested that his fo­cus is no longer on the job in hand. But Moss, speak­ing on the eve of the Monaco Grand Prix – a race he won on three oc­ca­sions – launched a staunch de­fence of his young com­pa­triot.

Asked if Hamil­ton can main­tain this hec­tic life­style, Moss replied: “Quite frankly, I think so. There is no doubt Lewis is one of the fastest driv­ers out there and I think his life­style is up to him. He is not a stupid man, he’s just a bloody quick rac­ing driver.”

Each of Moss’ three vic­to­ries in Monaco touched the three-hour mark. In con­trast, to­mor­row’s race, the sixth of the cham­pi­onship, will be con­cluded in less than two hours.

“When I won this race in 1961 it took me two and three quar­ter hours, so, they’ve got a pretty soft touch,” Moss added with a smile.

“They are all very, very fit, and now, you’re re­ally un­lucky if the car lets you down. It used to be, maybe you’ll win, maybe you won’t, (you were) de­pen­dent on the re­li­a­bil­ity of the car, but that’s all changed now.”

Fol­low­ing his spec­tac­u­lar col­li­sion with Nico Ros­berg at the last round in Spain, Hamil­ton heads into the Monte Carlo race 43 points adrift of his Mercedes team-mate. He has not won a race since Oc­to­ber’s United States Grand Prix – the scene of his third world cham­pi­onship tri­umph – and has not tasted vic­tory in Monaco since 2008.

GOLDEN BOY: Lewis Hamil­ton

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.