Former F1 motorsport boss Eddie Jordan believes that Lewis Hamilton is “already in a different league” to Michael Schumacher, despite his sixth world championship secured at the weekend leaving him one title behind the record-holder.
Hamilton needed just a handful of points to be crowned champion at the United States Grand Prix, and earned enough after finishing second to team-mate Valtteri Bottas.
Jordan reckons that not only is Hamilton as good as Schumacher, but he has surpassed him, due to the ways in which the latter used politics within the team to receive beneficiary treatment.
“Everyone has their own view on this, but I am of the view he’s already surpassed Michael,” he told talkSPORT.
“Michael started with me so there is a love affair there, but there is a situation some people may not fully grasp.
“At the time I handled people like [Rubens] Barrichello, [Eddie] Irvine, [Giancarlo] Fisichella and [Jean] Alesi, and every time we went to sign a contract with Michael Schumacher or Ferrari it always had conditions in it, where what we saw in Austin wouldn’t have been allowed to happen.
“Lewis, if he had in his contract the same things, he would have had to been able to pass [Valtteri] Bottas [to win the race].
“You can’t have that in a competitive sport, where one part of the team dictates to the other.
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“For me, that is a flaw factor for Michael. Seven World Championships… how many would he have won if he hadn’t had the influence and support of the other people in the team?
“Lewis is already in a different league, in my opinion. He’s done it on his own.
“What he has done has brought great pride to his family and his people, and he can be justifiably proud.”
After the achievement on Sunday, there has been a campaign from fans to get Hamilton knighted, and Jordan thinks he would deserve the honour should it come.
“There is a panel who judge and pick these people, and they must know what is happening. There are also other very strong criteria in that selection process, like charitable work, what he’s done in the community, and what he’s done to bring on people less fortunate than him, and I am quite sure Lewis does do that,” he explained.