After winning a difficult race to equal Michael Schumacher’s record of seven Formula One championships on Sunday, the hardest thing for Lewis Hamilton was containing his emotions.
His voice could be heard breaking as he thanked his team over the radio moments after crossing the line at the Turkish Grand Prix, while underneath the helmet the tears were starting to build up.
“All these emotions were running through me and I was trying to stop it,” Hamilton said in his post-race news conference. “I was thinking about my whole career, from when I was five when I drove in a go-kart, from when we won the British championship, driving home with my dad and singing ‘We Are The Champions’ and dreaming of being here.”
Lance Stroll of Montreal finished ninth despite leading from pole position for much of the 58-lap race.
A day earlier, Stroll had become the first Canadian to take a pole position at an F1 Grand Prix since Jacques Villeneuve accomplished the feat in 1997.
Moments after victory No. 94 and title No. 7, Hamilton sat in his car with his head in his hands.
“It really hit me and I just burst into tears. I couldn’t get out of the car because I just couldn’t believe it,” he said. “I didn’t want the visor to come up and people to see tears flowing, because I had always said I would never let you see me cry. I remember watching drivers in the past crying and I was like ‘I’m not going to do that.’ But it was too much.”
Speaking a short time after his win, Hamilton was wiping away those tears as he prepared to mount the podium.
“I’m definitely a bit lost for words,” he said, thanking his family. “I dreamed of this as