Lewis Hamilton sees himself in Max Verstappen, defends his ‘mistakes’

2022 was the worst season of Lewis Hamilton's F1 career, while Max Verstappen sealed his second consecutive title.

2022 has been without a doubt a season of superiority for Max Verstappen and Red Bull, who for the vast majority of the year has been in a league of his own.

It’s been a regular occurrence this season for Verstappen to escape into the distance and be largely unchallenged.

2021, of course, saw the titanic battle between Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton, one which went to the very last lap of the year at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.

The 2022 edition of the race at the Yas Marina Circuit couldn’t have been anymore different, with Verstappen having comfortably won the race, whilst Hamilton retired.

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Hamilton’s retirement from the race marked Mercedes’ first technical retirement of the season, which also capped off the worst season in the 37-year-old’s F1 career.

He not only finished sixth in the Drivers’ Championship, marking his lowest ever finish, but he also failed to win a single race for the first-time in his career.

Verstappen, on the other hand, enjoyed his most dominant campaign.

The 25-year-old not only claimed the record for most wins in a year, after sealing 15 superb victories, but he also set a new benchmark for the most points scored in a single campaign.

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Red Bull’s star scored 454 points in 2022, working out at 20.6 points per race, an unmatchable feat.

The two have endured one interaction on-track, though, this season.

Verstappen and Hamilton collided at the Brazilian Grand Prix for the second consecutive year, a collision that was ultimately determined to be the Dutchman’s fault.

A lot of Verstappen’s characteristics are actually very similar to what Hamilton was like when he was Verstappen’s age, albeit many years ago.

This is something that the 37-year-old seemingly believes himself, after a clip from an old interview was discovered.

In the interview, the seven-time World Champion admits that he sees “myself” in the Dutchman.

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“I look at Max he’s a great driver, I see myself there,” Hamilton revealed in the old interview.

“I know what it’s like when you’re young. So when people say “Oh he is making mistakes” I’m like “Who didn’t make mistakes at 18 years old, 20 years old?”.

“So I really sympathise with the experience that he’s having and the things people say and you know, he’s on his own journey. He’ll make whatever mistakes he makes and take leaps and bounds, whatever he decides to do.”