Sargeant on Hamilton: 'His legacy will live forever'

By Sports Desk July 05, 2023

Lewis Hamilton's Formula One legacy "will live forever" says Logan Sargeant, who does not anticipate the seven-time world champion will bow out just yet.

After a disappointing 2022 season, Hamilton is once again well behind two-time reigning world champion Max Verstappen in the F1 standings.

While Verstappen has seven race wins to his name already this year, Hamilton has zero, and has only managed three podium placings.

The Mercedes driver sits fourth in the drivers' championship, and there has been speculation that this year might be his last in F1.

Williams driver Sargeant, however, feels Hamilton will stay on, though the American is sure that legendary status has been secured for the Briton.

"I personally think he's going to stay," Sargeant told Stats Perform.

"I think he wants to keep going. I could be wrong.

"His legacy will live forever, he's one of the best ever do it, if not the best, and he's a driver I looked up to through my junior career.

"I'll always have a massive amount of respect for him. His legacy will live forever."

Sargeant, though, does not feel Hamilton or anyone else will be able to compete with Verstappen for this year's title.

He said: "This year, I don't think so. Maybe next year, but it seems like they [Red Bull] have got this year well under control.

"Max is obviously driving amazingly, so I don't think anyone's going to be able to beat them this year unless they have a problem."

Sargeant is experiencing his first season in F1, and conceded it is taking some getting used to.

"It's extremely difficult, as you can imagine, being against 19 of the other best drivers in the world," he said.

"It's so tight from eighth to 20th, and if you put one foot wrong, that can be the difference between getting top 10 or 20th, so that's the biggest challenge just making sure you're at your best every single day, and I feel like it's coming.

"I'm just getting more and more comfortable with it, so the goal is to eventually get to a point where I can extract everything that car has throughout a weekend. That's where I want to get to."

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    The seven-time world champion has not won a race for more than two years, but he led a surprise Mercedes one-two under the lights of the Sakhir Circuit on Thursday night.

    Hamilton finished two tenths clear of team-mate George Russell, with Aston Martin’s Fernando Alonso third.

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    The Silver Arrows went under the radar at last week’s test in the Gulf kingdom, but they were quietly optimistic heading into Thursday’s running – and the second session belonged to the team that once dominated the sport.

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    Hamilton is gearing up for his final season with Mercedes after he elected to terminate his £100million deal 12 months early to join Ferrari in 2025.

    Mercedes have carried Hamilton to six of his record-equalling seven titles. But last year marked a second straight season without a victory for the British driver – a losing streak which now stands at 45 races – and Mercedes’ first winless campaign in a dozen years.

    However, Hamilton, in his radically revised car – after the design concept which failed so spectacularly for the past two seasons was abandoned – will take faith from an encouraging day.

    But Hamilton expects Verstappen, who has raced to the past three world championships, will still be the one to beat.

    “I think we are going to be in the mix,” added Hamilton. “We are there or thereabouts with Ferrari and maybe Aston Martin and McLaren.

    “It is going to be close, but if Max is out in front he will drive off as he has done for the past couple of years.”

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    “Everything is s***,” yelled Verstappen over the radio. “Like miles off.”

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    “It is very close and maybe some people around us have turned up the engine in terms of top speed,” he said.

    “I’m not too worried about the gap to first, for example. It is going to be close in qualifying. I was happier about the long run for the race.”

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    Horner has been cleared to continue as Red Bull team principal following an internal probe into “inappropriate behaviour” towards a female colleague.

    Horner was on the Red Bull pit wall on Thursday for both practice sessions of the new season.

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    The PA news agency has contacted Formula One and the FIA for comment.

    Horner, who has protested his innocence throughout, was questioned by a lawyer for eight hours earlier this month at a secret London location.

    He has been Red Bull team principal since they entered F1 19 years ago and is the longest-serving boss on the grid.

    He has overseen seven drivers’ world championships and six constructors’ titles.

    Red Bull have dominated the sport in recent seasons and last year won 21 of the 22 races, with Dutch driver Max Verstappen setting a new record for 10 consecutive victories as he wrapped up his third title.

    Horner, who is married to former Spice Girls singer Geri Halliwell, was awarded a CBE for his services to motorsport in the New Year Honours.

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