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World champion Lewis Hamilton pays tribute to Ron Dennis

World champion Lewis Hamilton pays tribute to Ron Dennis
© Reuters
Hamilton won his sixth title earlier this month.

Lewis Hamilton revealed he received 400 messages of congratulations following his latest Formula One world championship triumph – and then paid tribute to mentor Ron Dennis.

Hamilton, 34, has won five of his six titles with Mercedes, but he was afforded his big break in the sport by Dennis.

The former McLaren chief signed the Briton, then only 13, three years after Hamilton, wearing a borrowed dinner jacket at a central London awards ceremony, asked if he could drive for him.

Hamilton came within just one point of winning the championship in his first season racing for Dennis in 2007 before he secured the title in the most dramatic of circumstances, here in Brazil, the following year.

He then upset Dennis by leaving McLaren for Mercedes at the end of 2012.

“Seeing Ron’s text really touched me inside,” said Hamilton. “I met him when I was 10 and he saw something in me that no one else did except for my dad.

“He gave me an opportunity to showcase my abilities and to learn and to grow. Without him I wouldn’t have made it to Formula One.

“I would have fallen away due to a lack of finances, and I would have been leapfrogged by a bunch of individuals who had more money, so I am forever grateful and I will always have love for Ron.

“He said how proud he was, so I hope he can feel he is just as much a part of this as anyone.”

Hamilton said double world champion Fernando Alonso, also sent him a message. The two drivers endured a fractious relationship during their only season together at McLaren, Hamilton’s first year on the grid.

“I got a text from Fernando as well which was pretty amazing,” said Hamilton.

“We went through a whirlwind of experiences together, but I have always had respect for what he has achieved and his ability.”

Hamilton, who begins his victory parade at this weekend’s Brazilian Grand Prix, said he is yet to fully celebrate the title that moved him to within striking range of Michael Schumacher’s record haul of seven.

Lewis Hamilton has won six world titles
Lewis Hamilton has won six world titles (PA)

Hamilton toasted his title with family and friends in New York before flying back to Mercedes’ factory in Northamptonshire.

“It just doesn’t fully resonate at the moment, but at some stage, I am sure it will,” added Hamilton, who will wear a commemorative crash helmet in Interlagos to honour his childhood hero, Ayrton Senna.

“I have not really celebrated yet. Each year is different. I was with my family. We travelled and enjoyed the moment together. We went partying, but it wasn’t heavy partying, just enjoying each other’s company.

“The venue we went to wasn’t that great, so we left, went home, had an amazing lunch the next day. I was training the next morning and back into work the following day.”

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Championship
Serie A
Australian Open First Round
Result
Querrey
Coric
6 6 6
3 4 4
Result
Safwat
Barrere
7  61 4 65
68 7  6 7 
Result
Carballes Baena
Berankis
4 2 2
6 6 6
Result
Evans
McDonald
3 4 6 6 6
6 6 1 2 3
Result
Nishioka
Djere
6 3 6 7 
4 6 2 61
Result
Pella
Smith
6 7 6
3 5 4
Result
Shapovalov
Fucsovics
3 7  1 63
6 67 6 7 
Result
Berrettini
Harris
6 6 6
3 1 3
Result
Zheng
Kalinskaya
6 6
3 2
Result
Golubic
Zhu
6 1 65
4 6 7 
Result
Alexandrova
Teichmann
6 4 6
4 6 2
Result
Badosa
Larsson
6 6
1 0
Result
Trevisan
Kenin
2 4
6 6
Result
Goerges
Kuzmova
6 6
1 2
Result
McHale
Martic
3 0
6 6
Result
Osaka
Bouzkova
6 6
2 4
Suspended
Garin
Travaglia
6 6 1
4 3 1
Suspended
Lopez
Bautista Agut
2 2
6 1
Suspended
Giustino
Raonic
2 1 2
6 6 5
Suspended
Sinner
Purcell
7  6 4
62 2 4
Result
Cirstea
Strycova
6 7 
2 65
Result
Li
Cabrera
7  7 
64 610
Result
Kanepi
Krejcikova
63 6 3
7  2 6
Result
Potapova
Williams
0 3
6 6
2.30am
Opelka
Fognini
2.30am
Sandgren
Trungelliti
2.30am
Edmund
Lajovic
2.30am
Linette
Rus
Result
Zidansek
Han
6 6
3 3
2.30am
Riske
Wang
Result
Siniakova
Kvitova
1 0
6 6
Result
Ahn
Wozniacki
1 3
6 6
4am
Halys
Krajinovic
4am
Thompson
Bublik
4am
Cilic
Moutet
Result
Johnson
Federer
3 2 2
6 6 6
4.30am
Davidovich Fokina
Gombos
4.30am
Mayer
Paul
4.30am
Andujar
Mmoh
Result
Ignacio Londero
Dimitrov
6 2 0 4
4 6 6 6
4.30am
Hurkacz
Novak
4.30am
Polmans
Kukushkin
4.30am
Brengle
Garcia
4.30am
Ferro
Van Uytvanck
4.30am
Wang
Parmentier
4.30am
Gasparyan
Sakkari
Result
Williams
Gauff
65 5
7  7
5am
Paire
Stebe
5am
Millman
Humbert
5am
Schwartman
Harris
5am
Keys
Kasatkina
5am
Pera
Rybakina
5am
Hibino
Peng
5am
Juvan
Yastremska
6.30am
Ito
Gunneswaran
6.30am
Kohlschreiber
Giron
6.30am
Sasnovich
Minnen
7am
Konta
Jabeur
7am
Hercog
Peterson
Result
Stosur
McNally
1 4
6 6
8am
Tsitsipas
Caruso
8am
Barty
Tsurenko
10am
Struff
Djokovic
10.30am
Stephens
Zhang
Turkish Super Lig
Serie B
Eerste Divisie

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