Hamilton: Racing without fans is better than nothing
Six-time Formula 1 champion Lewis Hamilton has said that racing in front of empty grandstands at Silverstone will give him an "empty feeling".
The six-time champion accepts, however, that racing behind closed doors is better than no F1 racing at all.
When you consider the 'orange army' of Max Verstappen fans in Austria, the tifosi at Monza and the heaving crowds at the British Grand Prix, then without fans, some of the races in 2020 will look and sound strange.
"It gave me a really empty feeling because the fans really make that race," said Hamilton in an interview on the Mercedes YouTube channel. "Around the world, all the races we go to, the more fans there, the more atmosphere you have.
"That’s why you have places like Silverstone, Monza – so it’s going to be very empty, but what’s great is I’m getting messages from people around the world who are struggling during this period because they’re not getting to watch sports.
"It just shows how significant sport is in peoples lives. It brings us all together and it’s so exciting, captivating, so I don’t know how exciting it’s going to be for people watching on TV but it’s going to be better than nothing."
Taking victory in five of the past six British Grands Prix, Hamilton has crowd surfed in celebration.
"As I said, for us, it’s going to be like a test day," continued Hamilton. "Probably even worse than a test day in a sense that at a test day there’s not a huge amount of people at Barcelona, but there are still some.
"Here, you’re going to have nobody in the crowd and you’re just going to see empty seats as you’re driving down.
"But racing is racing and, as I’ve said, I don’t think any of us have had time to really truly unleash the potential of our cars, so I’m excited to get back in. I really, really do miss it."
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