Lewis Hamilton could equal Ayrton Senna’s win record of 41 victories this weekend at the Singapore Grand Prix, although Hamilton has played down the achievement, citing if Senna had lived after his crash in Imola, he would have gone on to win many more races and championships.
“It doesn’t matter if it is this weekend, next weekend or the weekend after, I will eventually the same number of wins as Ayrton. If Ayrton had been able to continue, he would have won many more races and many more championships, so I think I am carrying the baton for both of us and striving to win more for the both of us. I think if he was around, we would be friends.”
Hamilton was only notified after the last race at the Italian Grand Prix that he was a win away from matching Senna’s record.
“I honestly couldn’t believe it. I didn’t know that the whole nine years what course I was on.
“Naturally it feels pretty amazing. That was my goal as a kid.”
Inspired by Senna at a young age, Hamilton put his admiration into practice during his time at karting, inheriting Senna’s never give up attitude.
“I quite liked when Senna and [Alain] Prost crashed in Japan and then he won – that race stands out to me. He never gave up and kept pushing. Reminds me of karting, I would get knocked off and then I would come back.”
Sebastian Vettel is also tied with Senna on 41 race victories, he equalled Senna’s tally at the 2015 Malaysian Gran Prix.
Image via Mercedes AMG Petronas