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Montezemolo says Hamilton now a F1 'great'

Montezemolo says Hamilton now a F1 'great'
© Reuters
Former Ferrari president Luca di Montezemolo says Lewis Hamilton is a Formula 1 "great".

Former Ferrari president Luca di Montezemolo says Lewis Hamilton is a Formula 1 "great".

The Mercedes driver secured his sixth drivers' title in Austin - a feat bettered only in F1 history by Michael Schumacher.

Many are hailing the achievement, and among them is Ferrari's highly successful former president Montezemolo.

"Lewis is a great," he told Italian radio Rai.

"I believe his victory will give great pleasure above to my friend Niki Lauda, because it was he who did everything he could to bring him to Mercedes."

Montezemolo's words coincide with ongoing suggestions and rumours that Hamilton, 34, may seek a new challenge by switching to Ferrari for 2021.

"First of all," 72-year-old Montezemolo said, "I admire his always sporting behaviour, both in and out of the car.

"Then there is his extraordinary ability to regulate his race according to the needs of the circuit.

"He is very fast, he knows how to use the machine and tyres intelligently, and he is great at bringing the results home," the Italian added.

"He is a driver who enters the world of Formula 1 legends," Montezemolo continued. "Last year he won even when in certain races his car was not the best.

"Starting with Fangio, I put him at the level of Lauda, Schumacher, Senna, Clark and Stewart," he said.

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Saturday's key events

· Two-time Olympic gold medallist and comeback queen Helen Glover teams up with Polly Swan in the heats of the women's pair (12.30am-4.30am)

· Two-time Rio gold medallist Max Whitlock leads Team GB's charge in the men's qualification, while Rhys McClenaghan flies the flag for Ireland (2am-2pm)

· The first gold medal of the Games will be awarded in the Air Rifle women's final (from 2.45am)

· The men's road race should be a wide-open thriller, with Team GB among those going for gold (3am-10am)

· Andy Murray, Novak Djokovic and Naomi Osaka are among the names in action on the opening day of tennis (from 3am)

· Adam Peaty and many others get their Olympics campaigns underway on the opening day of swimming (11am-12.50pm)

· Team GB's women try to make it two wins from two against hosts Japan (11.30am)
· Netherlands and Brazil, who scored 15 goals between them on matchday one, face off (12pm)
· World champions USA look to bounce back from a shock opening defeat against New Zealand (12.30pm)

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