Lewis Hamilton’s knighthood demonstrates that he is getting the recognition he deserves for his record-breaking Formula 1 career, according to Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff.

Hamilton follows Sir Jack Brabham, Sir Jackie Stewart and Sir Stirling Moss as F1 drivers who have been knighted, although the previous three received theirs after their racing careers. However, with Hamilton’s career statistics having now established him as the most successful driver in history, Wolff said it’s a well-earned accolade.

“Lewis is one of the very greatest racing drivers of all time and the most successful British sportsperson of his era,” Wolff said. “Around the world, he has long been recognized for his sporting achievement; this year, he combined his excellence on the track with a powerful voice to fight discrimination. In every sense, he led the way in 2020. 

“The news that he is to receive a knighthood shows that he is now receiving the recognition he has earned during a career of unparalleled success in motorsport. The UK can be very proud to have a champion and ambassador of the caliber of Sir Lewis Hamilton.”

Hamilton was described as “a true giant” of F1 by new CEO Stefano Domenicali when the knighthood was officially announced on Wednesday night, but the seven-time world champion – who was also named BBC Sports Personality of the Year this year after a public vote – has yet to comment on the news.