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'Hamilton's home haters should realise he's the best'

'Hamilton's home haters should realise he's the best'

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'Hamilton's home haters should realise he's the best'

'Hamilton's home haters should realise he's the best'

Mercedes boss team principal Toto Wolff says Lewis Hamilton does not receive the recognition he deserves, particularly in his home country. Wolff says British racing fans forget that Hamilton may be the greatest driver in history when they criticise him.

Hamilton has enjoyed one of the great F1 careers already, racking up five world titles and breaking many records along the way.

He is already F1's greatest qualifier of all time, having taken his 86h pole position in France. Hamilton took that record from Michael Schumacher, and the German great's benchmarks for world titles (7) and race wins(91) are also in the Brit's sights.

However, Hamilton regularly faces as much criticism as praise in the UK. Despite his many successes, he has only once won the BBC's Sports Personality of the Year – awarded annually to recognise achievement in sports. By comparison, both Nigel Mansell and Damon Hill won the award twice in their careers, despite winning just one world title apiece.

"In general in the United Kingdom, Lewis is not recognised how he should be recognised," Wolff said.

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"One day he's going to stop his career, with multiple records, and people will say 'he was the greatest driver on the planet and we were witnesses of that journey, and wasn't he an interesting personality with all the things he did?'.

"But for whatever reason there is this idea of hitting out, which maybe it provides the better headline, maybe it sells more newspapers, or gives more clicks.

"I don't think it recognises the opportunity that we are part of, to see maybe the best driver that has ever existed on an exceptional journey."

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