Lewis Hamilton says he “could only ever have dreamed” to break Michael Schumacher’s 14-year F1 wins record.
The 35-year-old beat Valterri Bottas to victory in Sunday’s Portuguese Grand Prix, the 92nd of his career, as he closes in on his seventh world title.
Speaking to the BBC, the Stevenage-born Mercedes driver was elated: “I didn’t have a magic ball when I chose to come to this team and partner with these great people, but here I am.
“Everything we do together – we are all rowing in the same direction and that’s why we’re doing what we’re doing.”
Hamilton had started poorly in the Algarve, dropping to third from pole in the first two laps, but he fought back to pass rival Bottas and increase his lead in the Driver’s Championship to 77 points.Embed from Getty Images
The record of 91 wins, previously held by the legendary Schumacher, was completed in 2006 with his win in the Chinese Grand Prix, though he couldn’t add to his seven titles that year – another record Hamilton is looking to conquer.
Speaking to BBC, Hamilton said: “I really owe it all to [Mercedes team] for their teamwork, continually innovating and pushing the barrier even higher every year,” he said. “It’s such a privilege working with them. It really is absolutely incredible.”
For now though, Hamilton is savouring his newest feat in a tremendous career, around those he loves most.
“My dad’s here and my step mum Linda, and Roscoe [his dog]. It is going to take some time for it to fully sink in. I was still pushing flat out as I came across the line. I can’t find the words at the moment.”
The next Grand Prix takes place in Imola, Italy at the Autodromo Internazionale Enzo e Dino Ferrari – as Hamilton hopes to increase his lead at the top and record a 93rd career victory.