The Commercial Appeal

Hamilton dedicates Canadian GP victory to Ali

- From Our Press Services

MONTREAL — Lewis Hamilton had something on his mind before he was ready to ascend to the top step of the Formula One podium for the second week in a row.

So he climbed on top of his car for a little shadow boxing.

Then he jumped down to the ground and did the Ali Shuffle.

“Float like a butterfly, sting like a bee,” he radioed to his crew on Sunday after winning the Canadian Grand Prix for the fifth time, and the second in a row. “That was for Muhammad Ali.”

Continuing Mercedes F1 dominance, Hamilton took advantage of Sebastian Vettel’s two-pit stop strategy to claim his 45th career win.

Hamilton made it through the 70 laps on the 2.71-mile (4.363-km) Circuit Gilles Villeneuve with one pit stop, finishing in 1 hour, 31 minutes, 5.296 seconds, about 5 seconds ahead of Vettel.

Afterward, Hamilton dedicated the victory to Ali, who died last week, and said he couldn’t stop thinking about the former heavyweigh­t champ — even with 15 laps still to go.

“I never really dedicate wins to anyone, but it’s someone that’s really inspired me so much throughout my life,” Hamilton said. “I was driving, and I was just thinking of him, and thinking maybe he would be watching the race, I don’t know. So that’s to him and his family. Rest in peace.”

With the victory, Hamilton cut Mercedes teammate Nico Rosberg’s lead in the championsh­ip standings from 24 points to nine, 116-107.

Vettel moved into third in the points race, with 78.

OTHER RACES

Firestone 600 at Fort Worth, Texas: After another soggy day in Texas, the IndyCar Series will wait 2½ months before a third try to race.

Only 71 of the scheduled 248 laps were completed Sunday before rain in an approachin­g thundersto­rm hit the track. With a 50 percent chance of more rain today, IndyCar decided to resume the Firestone 600 Aug. 27. The race was also postponed by rain on Saturday night.

NHRA Summernati­onals at Englishtow­n, N.J.: Angelle Sampey raced to her first Pro Stock Motorcycle victory since 2007 at Old Bridge Township Raceway Park.

In the final, Sampey powered her Buell to a 6.876-second pass at 194.41 mph to beat Jerry Savoie for her 42nd career victory the most by a female rider or driver in NHRA history.

Steve Torrence (4.037 at 281.71) won in Top Fuel, Ron Capps (3.954 at 316.90) in Funny Car, and Greg Anderson (6.610 at 210.93) in Pro Stock.

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