‘Something snapped’ in Lewis Hamilton after Abu Dhabi ‘robbery’

Lewis Hamilton's last victory was the 2021 Saudi Arabian Grand Prix.

Dutch Formula 1 pundit Rob Kamphues is adamant that “the era of Lewis Hamilton” is officially over, with the pundit questioning if the sport is now in an era of reigning World Champion Max Verstappen.

The seven-time World Champion certainly hasn’t been a dominant figure since the start of the new aerodynamic era in 2022, with the Briton’s last win being the 2021 Saudi Arabian Grand Prix.

Hamilton has struggled to adjust to the new era of the sport, which as a result has seen his period of dominance end.

Since the new regs were introduced, Hamilton hasn’t claimed a pole position or a victory, whilst he was also beaten in the Drivers’ Championship last season by team-mate George Russell.

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All of those things added together have left Kamphues convinced that Hamilton’s dominant days are over, with the question now being when was the “Great Tipping Point”?

“Can we already conclude that the era of Lewis Hamilton in Formula 1 is over, or is it still too early for that?” Kamphues wrote in a column for Formule 1.nl.

“Have we definitively entered the era of Max Verstappen and his contemporaries and if so, which event do we designate as the ‘Great Tipping Point’?

“Was that Abu Dhabi 2021, where Max squeaked him on the last lap? Could something have snapped in the great champion? 

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“Lewis hasn’t won a race since that day, he hasn’t achieved pole, he’s never even started from the front row. 

“In 2022 he also finished behind his younger teammate in the championship and that younger teammate also won the only race Mercedes won. Not to mention this season.”

Whilst Hamilton’s era of dominance is over in the pundit’s eyes, he does still believe that the 38-year-old can be a leading challenger, should Mercedes give him a good car.

Fernando Alonso is proof that age certainly doesn’t make a difference, with the 41-year-old having claimed three consecutive podiums for Aston Martin.

With that in mind, Kamphues believes Hamilton can look to the likes of Alonso and Alain Prost and believe that a return to the front of the field is possible.

“He will remind us of Alain Prost, who left Formula 1 with his tail between his legs in the year that Ayrton Senna became world champion for the third time,” Kamphues continued.

“He did not race in 1992, rejoined Williams in 1993 and promptly became champion himself for a fourth time. 

“Lewis will point to Alonso and say, ‘How many times have you written him off?’ 

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“After his failure at Ferrari, his failed adventure at McLaren and again last winter when he moved from Renault to Aston Martin. 

“And look how it now drives the stars from heaven again.

“In other words, it is too early to definitively determine that the era of Lewis is over. But it is. Call me in five years and tell me I was right.”