Lewis Hamilton fires warning shot to rivals out to get his F1 world title – The Sun

LEWIS HAMILTON has told rivals bidding to shoot down his quest for a seventh world title: Bring it on.

Hamilton, 35, can match Michael Schumacher’s tally should he win the F1 championship this season.

However, with no new major rule changes, the field promises to be closer than ever, with young guns Max Verstappen and Charles Leclerc, both 22, set to push him to the wire.

But the Brit is ready for the Red Bull and Ferrari drivers as they come to snatch his crown.

He said: “I’ve had a target on my back since the day I won my first championship when I was ten years old so it’s nothing new to me.

“I’ve always been the only black driver there, I've always been generally at the front of the championships, so it’s no different to any of the other 27 years of driving — so I’m quite comfortable in that space.

“It’s also a positive when people are targeting you and looking to try and beat you because you want everyone to bring their A-game.

“So if we do manage to pull it off and finish ahead, it feels even better.”

Hamilton has also dismissed suggestions that his success is down to the superior Mercedes F1 car.

Instead, he says it is a collective effort with the Brackley-based team to produce the best car on the grid.

He added: “When I joined this team I believed we would be winning at some stage. Did I think we would win as much as we have? Absolutely not.

“But I don’t feel it’s a coincidence that we have won as much as we have because the whole organisation, the whole team, absolutely every individual is so focused.

“You have seen our consistency over the years, it doesn’t come easy, but it comes from really great work, a lot of great communication.

“We’re very critical of ourselves, everyone’s very open, we’re not treading on eggshells around anyone. So it is the perfect team.”

Hamilton begins the defence of his crown in Melbourne next weekend — and despite his fears over racing’s impact on the environment that is out-weighed by the overall impact the Brit feels he is having.

He said: “Ultimately, the end result is me to stop racing. But at the moment, it gives me the platform.

“I don’t want to give less. I’m a perfectionist.”

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