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Champagne moment for Lewis Hamilton as he wins third World Championship

Published 25/10/2015

Lewis Hamilton secured the title with three races to spare
Lewis Hamilton secured the title with three races to spare

Briton Lewis Hamilton today clinched his third World Championship when he won the US Grand Prix in Austin, Texas.

The race went ahead after persistent heavy rain but afterwards there was champagne in the air as Hamilton sprayed the celebratory alcohol over his fans.

Nico Rosberg appeared on course to postpone his team-mate's title celebrations for one more race, but the German made an unforced error with just seven laps remaining to allow Hamilton to take the lead.

Sebastian Vettel fought his way back from 13th to finish third in one of the best races in recent memory but it was not enough to prevent Hamilton from amounting an unassailable lead in the championship with three races to spare.

Hamilton now joins Ayrton Senna and Sir Jackie Stewart with three titles to his name. He also becomes the first British driver to successfully defend his Formula One crown.

Hamilton hurled the trophy in the air then caught it again and was delighted to be congratulated on the podium by pop legend Sir Elton John who said: "What a race!"

Hamilton told him: "I can't believe you're here!"

And he thanked the crowd for staying through the rain to watch the race, adding: "I think we put a good show on for you today."

He thanked his crew and his family, who he said were watching, saying: "I love you all."

He asked Sir Elton: "Are you throwing a party?"

Sir Elton said: "I'm playing tonight, later" and Hamilton replied: "I'm going to be there, I wouldn't miss it for the world."

Boxer Amir Khan tweeted: "A big well done to @LewisHamilton on winning today and becoming world champion."

Former world champion Mario Andretti posted: " Congrats Lewis @LewisHamilton well deserved race win and 3rd #F1world Title!! You definitely rock!"

Coral bookmakers made Hamilton 6-1 second-favourite to become the BBC Sports Personality of the Year for 2015. Jessica Ennis-Hill remains the odds-on favourite to win the award at 4-5, while Andy Murray and Chris Froome can be backed at 7-1.

Coral has opened up betting on the 2016 Drivers' Championship where Hamilton is 4-6 to defend his title again.

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