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Hamilton opens up about losing the title in Abu Dhabi: I had no strength

Hamilton opens up about losing the title in Abu Dhabi: "I had no strength"

08-08-2022 13:43 Last update: 20:06


In an interview for Vanity FairLewis Hamilton opens up about his feelings after the 2021 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, where Max Verstappen ran away with the world title in the closing stages of the race. The Brit recalls how he got out of his car in disbelief.

The two rivals were tied in points for the final race of the season. With five laps to go, Hamilton had an eleven-second lead over Verstappen. A late safety car following Nicholas Latifi's crash and Michael Masi's controversial decisions meant Verstappen was still able to overtake his rival for victory in the closing stages of the race.

"You see things start to unfold, and my worst fears came alive. I was like, there’s no way they’re going to cheat me out of this", Hamilton recalls. With Verstappen on fresh tyres, Hamilton found it difficult to defend against the Dutchman. The FIA launched an investigation into the events in Abu Dhabi, which found that Masi had made a human error.

Hamilton full of disbelief after Verstappen's title victory

In the interview Hamilton is asked how he felt in the car. "I don’t know if I can really put into words the feeling that I had. I do remember just sitting there just in disbelief. And realizing I’ve got to undo my belts, I’ve got to get out of there, I’ve got to climb out of this thing, I’ve got to find the strength. I had no strength. And it was one of the toughest moments, I would say, that I’ve had in a long, long time." Hamilton says he was aware of the race control decisions. The Briton knew something was not right.

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