Lewis Hamilton has been awarded a knighthood in the United Kingdom’s New Years Honors list, prompting Formula 1 to hail him as “a true giant” of the sport.
The recognition will grant the 35-year-old the title of Sir Lewis Hamilton, capping a year in which he earned a record-equaling sevenths drivers’ championship, matching Michael Schumacher’s tally. Hamilton also surpassed the previous benchmark of 91 wins – also held by Schumacher – and now has 95 to his name.
On top of his standout achievements on the track, Hamil ton h as been a leading voice in the fight for racial equality on a global scale, as well as focusing on making Formula 1 a more diverse sport. He has set up The Hamilton Commission to try and improve the representation of black people in UK motorsport, and also formed the X44 Extreme E team to take part in a new series promoting female involvement as well as climate change.
Honors are informally approved by The Queen in the UK, and her latest New Years list gives Hamilton a knighthood in addition to the MBE that he received after winning his first world championship back in 2008.
New F1 CEO Stefano Domenicali says Hamilton’s honor is a reflection of his impact both within the sport and beyond, on top of his driving records.
“Lewis is a true giant of our sport and his influence is huge both in and out of a car,” Domenicali said. “What he has achieved is phenomenal with still more to come. All of us at Formula 1 congratulate him on this well deserved recognition of his achievements and look forward to seeing more of his brilliance in 2021.”
Hamilton joins Sir Jack Brabham, Sir Jackie Stewart and Sir Stirling Moss as the only F1 drivers to have been knighted, although all of the previous three received their recognition after their careers had ended.