Upon receiving his honorary Brazilian citizenship Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton has been called an eight-time F1 world champion by Arthur Lira, President of the Chamber of Deputies.
Hamilton was controversially beaten to the 2021 Formula 1 world title by Max Verstappen at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, with many observers feeling the Mercedes driver was robbed of victory which would have given him an eighth world championship.
“There are really seven titles, but in the hearts of the fans there are eight,” said Arthur Lira, and as cheers came from fans came down, he repeated “eight-time world champion.”
Hamilton smiled and nodded as Lira made the comments.
Hamilton feels Brazilian
“I feel like now I’m one of you,” Hamilton said in a crowded session of Congress in Brazil.
“I have so many amazing memories of Brazil.
“And particularly 2021. Knowing you guys would cheer me on the way was one of the most special moments of my entire life. I can’t wait for us to continue to strive ahead.”
Hamilton also looked to dedicate his award to F1 hero and Brazilian legend Ayrton Senna.
“I really want to dedicate this honour to Ayrton Senna,” the Mercedes driver said.
“When I was five years old I saw Ayrton race for the first time, and that was the moment I knew I wanted to be a world champion like him.”