Lewis Hamilton’s friend surprises at Red Bull launch

Red Bull revealed the livery of their 2023 F1 car last Friday in New York City, not giving away much in terms of their design.

Seven-time World Champion Lewis Hamilton may have been slightly surprised had he tuned in to Red Bull’s launch of their 2023 challenger last week, with a friend of the Mercedes driver having featured on-stage.

Halfway through the Austrians glitzy launch event in New York City, British-born American Miles Chamley-Watson was interviewed about Red Bull athletes, with him being one of the world’s biggest stars in the sport of fencing.

Chamley-Watson is a highly decorated fencer who is an Olympic bronze-medallist, an 11-time team Pan American Champion, 2019 team World Champion, and the 2013 individual World Champion.

Himself and Hamilton have been spotted on several holidays together over the years, with Chamley-Watson having also attended several races in support of Hamilton.

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To highlight the strength of their friendship, Chamley-Watson attended the 2021 Met Gala alongside the 103-time race winner.

Hamilton was actually discussed following the launch of the car, with double World Champion Max Verstappen having been asked about his ferocious rival.

The Dutchman was asked if he still views Hamilton as a ‘threat’, given how Mercedes slumped to third in the Constructors’ Championship last season.

Verstappen’s answer was defining, with the 25-year-old adamant that Hamilton “can fight for the title again”, if given the car to do so.

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“Of course he is, he’s one of the greatest drivers ever in the sport,” Verstappen told Sky Sports F1.

“If he has the car to do it, he can fight for the title again.

“It’s the same for George, for Charles, it’s the same for Lando. If you give them a car that’s capable of winning a championship, they can.”

Verstappen and Hamilton’s 2021 title fight was titanic, with the duo having given each other absolutely no room for error, resulting in multiple collisions.

With that in mind, Verstappen has warned the likes of Charles Leclerc and George Russell of the “pressure” that comes with fighting for a title, with the expectation being that they’ll be amongst the fight with the Red Bull driver and Hamilton.

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“It’s also about when you have the car then the pressure comes,” he continued.

“You can’t afford mistakes, or at least you can’t afford big mistakes.

“That’s a little bit of a different pressure you have but I’m confident that once these guys get into a role like that, it’s all possible. They all have the talent to do so.”