Hamilton explains why he swapped helmets with Vettel

28-12-2018 12:15
by Nicolás Quarles van Ufford
F1 News
Hamilton explains why he swapped helmets with Vettel

Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton has explained why and how the helmet exchange between himself and Sebastian Vettel happened, as the two rivals came together post-race in Abu Dhabi last month to swap helmets.

The two have been battling it out on the track for over a decade now, becoming each other's title rivals every year in recent times. This season, Vettel looked to be seriously contending for the title at first, but Hamilton ran away with it eventually.

Still, despite some accidents and moments on track, the two have tremendous respect for each other. With nine titles between them, it's rare to see winners of their calibre going up against each other while both being in their primes.

Hamilton revealed that after Abu Dhabi, he received a text from Vettel.

"He messaged me and said ‘Would you like to exchange helmets?’," the 33-year-old explained to F1i.com.

"Footballers do this type of thing all the time but helmets are a lot more expensive than football jerseys that get thrown about. These things are quite precious to us.

"I personally don’t give any of my helmets away. I swapped one with Michael [Schumacher].

"I think there might have been one or two other drivers who I exchanged helmets with but I don’t look upon it lightly."

Still, he made an exception for Vettel, which shows how much respect there is between the two.

"This was really quite a privileged moment because I am standing next to a four-time world champion who had achieved a lot.

"He is a great man and an incredible driver. This is the ultimate sign of respect when you exchange helmets."

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