Lewis Hamilton’s success in Formula 1 need not scare the upcoming British drivers since the five-time world champion had a big stroke of luck on his side for most of his career, says three-time world champion, Sir Jackie Stewart.
The current world champion debuted in F1 in 2007 with McLaren and won his first title the following year. He then switched to Mercedes in 2013 and has benefited from the German team’s dominance in the turbo hybrid era.
Several British racers have joined the series this year. George Russell, Lando Norris, and British-Thai racer Alexander Albon graduated from F2 to F1 this season.
When asked if Hamilton has set an impossible yardstick for the upcoming drivers, forcing them to try to replicate his success, Stewart said: “you shouldn’t be boxing yourself in”
“Lewis currently is not only driving well, but he has also got the best team in the world with the best engine in the world right now,” said Stewart.
“But he’s driving it well too. You’ve got so many other dimensions to it when you’re a Formula 1 driver, and the dependency of the car.
“When I left the Matra, I went to a March [for the 1970 season]. Now that was a challenge!
“So, if Lewis were to go from Mercedes and go to an uncompetitive team, that would be a challenge.
“Lewis has done extremely well, but he’s been a very lucky boy, to have [former McLaren boss] Ron Dennis pick him up the way he did, to bring him up the way he did.
“And in those days, the McLaren was the best car in the world in Formula 1, including Ferrari.”
All the three rookies will start in the midfield teams, which may give them a chance to settle in before comparisons start flying.
Russell will be driving with Williams while Norris is set to race with McLaren. Albon, who has never even tested an F1 car will be at Toro Rosso.
Each rookie has a teammate with a different experience. Russell’s teammate Robert Kubica has some F1 experience under his belt. Carlos Sainz, McLaren’s other driver is a fairly experienced and top-rated driver while Albon’s partner, Daniil Kvyat has been in and out of two different teams in the last few years.
Stewart suggested the rookies make the best use of their teammate’s experience and at the same time not be stunned by their reputation.
“When I went in, I was going in at the time of Jim Clark and Jack Brabham and Graham Hill, Bruce McLaren,” he said. “They were all top-line drivers.
“I think you learn from the top drivers, you watch them, you listen to them, you try and get communication with them.
“You want to get comfortable with everybody. Human relationships are very important.”
1 comment on “Hamilton is too lucky: Stewart”
I have always been a Hamilton fan but that engine in the Mercedes literally gave him some pretty easy championships,similar to Red Bull and Vettels “championships “ with the Red Bull diffuser