Arise Sir Lewis! Pressure grows to knight seven-time Formula One champion Hamilton with Lord Hain set to write to Prime Minister Boris Johnson about a promotion from his MBE in the New Years’ honours list
- Lewis Hamilton won his seventh Formula One world title on Sunday afternoon
- The Mercedes driver won the Turkish Grand Prix in Istanbul to seal the title
- Lord Hain will write to PM Boris Johnson demanding that Hamilton is knighted
- Hamilton was awarded an MBE 12 years ago but Lord Hain will ask for an upgrade
Lewis Hamilton was hailed as Britain’s greatest ever sportsman after winning his seventh world title, increasing pressure for his achievements to be rewarded with a knighthood.
The Mercedes driver sealed his global dominance with a supreme victory in the Turkish Grand Prix to go level with Michael Schumacher in championships, though already ahead on wins and pole positions.
Other sports stars paid tribute to Hamilton, with former England captain Rio Ferdinand, saying: ‘Lewis is the greatest sportsman this country has ever produced – no doubts. And he still has more chapters to come.’
Lewis Hamilton was hailed as Britain’s greatest sportsman after winning his seventh F1 title
Mercedes driver Hamilton (above) won Istanbul’s Turkish Grand Prix on Sunday to seal the title
Clamour for national recognition comes after contemporaries such as Sir Andy Murray, Sir Mo Farah and Sir Alastair Cook have all been knighted.
Lord Hain, the former cabinet minister, will today send a second letter to Boris Johnson calling for Hamilton to be promoted from in the New Year Honours from the MBE he received 12 years ago.
As Sportsmail revealed last year, Hain’s research as chairman of the All-Party Parliamentary Group for F1 shows that Hamilton, who is worth more than £250million, is among the top 5,000 taxpayers in Britain despite living in Monaco.
Ex-cabinet minister Lord Hain (above) will write to Boris Johnson for a Hamilton knighthood
Ex-England star Gary Lineker was one of several sportspeople to congratulate Hamilton
Ex-England star Gary Lineker said the super-star driver is ‘right up there alongside our greatest ever sportspeople. Stunning.’
Nico Rosberg, Hamilton’s only team-mate ever to have beaten him to the title, in 2016, said: ‘Seven-time world champion – that’s insane. Massively deserved. Surely one of the greatest achievements in the history of sport. Congratulations Lewis.’
Asked about the prospect of a knighthood, Hamilton said: ‘When I think about that honour, I think about people like my grandad who served in the war, Captain Tom, who waited 100 years for it, and the unsung heroes working in hospitals.
‘I haven’t saved anybody. I am a very proud Brit and it is an honour to represent the country, hear the anthem playing and see the flag flying above me.’