Lewis Hamilton opened up about taking to the race track in his younger years. The 36-year-old has since become one of Formula One’s most successful driversAt an early age, Lewis rose through the ranks of competitive go-karting but admitted it was not without its struggles.
The racing champion admitted he didn’t have many people to talk to about what he was going through. Lewis, who is now Stevenage’s most famous star, revealed that bullying and racial taunting blighted much of his childhood.
The F1 star is of mixed-race heritage, born to a British mother Carmen Larbalestier, and a Grenadian-British father, Anthony Hamilton.
At the age of 12, he decided to live with his dad following his parents’ separation. “My mum was wonderful,” he told the Guardian. “She was so loving.
“But she didn’t fully understand the impact of the things I was experiencing at school. The bullying and being picked on.” He continued: “And my dad was quite tough, so I didn’t tell him too much about those experiences. “As a kid, I remember just staying quiet about it because I didn’t feel anyone really understood. I just kept it to myself.” Racing became a release for the rising champion, as he shared his dad’s words of encouragement to critics.
Lewis said: “[My dad] said, ‘Always do your talking on the track.'” Meanwhile, the F1 star is gearing up for the Mexican Grand Prix as he competes for the title. Lewis responded to recent comments from main title rival Max Verstappen after the Red Bull driver branded the seven-time world champion “stupid” during practice for the United States Grand Prix. And it’s not the first time the pair have had a heated battle this season, clashing twice on the track at the British and Italian Grand Prix. Speaking to Express at Thursday’s sports conference, Lewis addressed his rival’s comments. “I mean, look, I have been here for a long time,” he commented. “So it’s not my first rodeo but I think at the core of everything there has to be respect.”
He continued: “When I think about and I hear the things that come out of drivers’ mouths, I do think about the young kid like Regina we just saw here [from the press conference] there are kids watching us and they’re looking for us for inspiration and for guidance. “And so there has been a lot of things that have been said which is definitely not good for young kids that are watching. “For me, I’m just trying to remain positive and keep calm and again, just be respectful to the drivers I’m fighting, regardless if I think if I have a name in my head of what I think they are. I don’t share that.”
“But it’s pretty easy for me, you laugh it off and you move forwards,” Lewis added. Qualifying gets underway at 8pm BST on Saturday evening with the race at 7pm on Sunday.