Belfast Telegraph

Complacency isn't in my nature: Hamilton

Champagne moment: Lewis Hamilton is closing in on title
Champagne moment: Lewis Hamilton is closing in on title

By Philip Duncan

Lewis Hamilton insists his feet will stay firmly on the ground despite being on the brink of championship glory.

The British driver will head to Austin, Texas - a venue where he is unbeaten since 2013 - in the knowledge that another victory, and failure from his fallen rival Sebastian Vettel to finish in the top two, will secure his title fate a week on Sunday and render the final three rounds of the year in Mexico, Brazil and Abu Dhabi as a victory parade.

But, after securing his sixth win in seven rounds at the Japanese Grand Prix to move 67 points clear of Ferrari's Vettel with just 100 to play for, the Englishman was refusing to get carried away.

"It is very easy for me not to do that because I am very strict on not being complacent," he said.

"There are 100 points available and I know we have to keep doing the job until the last chequered flag. That is the goal."

Hamilton entered the final two rounds of his debut season in 2007 with an almost unassailable championship lead over Kimi Raikkonen, only to fall a point short of glory.

He added: "From past experiences, so much can happen, so I will be at the factory this week and the focus will be on extracting as much as we can from this car because we can always improve."

While Vettel's demise has virtually cleared the path for Hamilton to cruise to the championship, nothing should be taken away from the Mercedes driver's performances in recent races.

Hamilton's title defence got off to a slow start, but he has been in the form of his life during a run which has exposed both Vettel's and Ferrari's weaknesses.

"I feel very proud of our performance," he added.

"We stayed on course with our plan and we have continued to deliver."

Belfast Telegraph


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