Lewis Hamilton sends strong message to F1 chiefs ahead of controversial Las Vegas Grand Prix

Lewis Hamilton F1 news

Lewis Hamilton has made it clear he wants F1 organisers to consider locals prior to Sunday's Las Vegas Grand Prix

Jack Otway

By Jack Otway

Published: 16/11/2023

- 08:43

The Briton will be hoping to finally secure a first Formula One race win of the season

Lewis Hamilton has made it clear he wants F1 chiefs to 'look after people' as Sunday's Las Vegas Grand Prix moves closer.

The Briton will go into the race in America hoping for a first victory since 2021.

Hamilton failed to win a single event last season, with Max Verstappen cruising to title glory instead.

And the Stevenage-born racer has toiled again this term, with Verstappen once again leading the way.

Lewis Hamilton F1 Las Vegas Grand prix

Lewis Hamilton has responded to the controversy surrounding the F1 Las Vegas Grand Prix


As Sunday's blockbuster showing creeps closer, F1 chiefs have faced criticism.

Vegas residents are unhappy at the transformation of the city's famous Strip, with several changes sparking anger.

Trees have been taken down to accommodate the race, while the fountains at the Bellagio have been drained.

Greg Maffei, the CEO of Liberty Media, has even apologised for the way the situation has been handled.

And Hamilton has now sent a strong message, insisting race organisers need to keep the locals in mind.

“I’ve heard there’s been a lot of complaints about the event being here from the locals," he said.

“I think we have to be respectful of the locals here, so many people working so hard – there’s a lot of money and wealth in this city.

“We’ve got to make sure people are taken care of.

"We can’t be a circus that shows up that’s all glitz and glamour and people are affected negatively by it, in my opinion.”

Hamilton is, however, delighted with the way F1 has grown in America in recent years.

He says citizens of the country now have a better understanding of the sport compared to when he was first starting out.

“I’ve been here [in F1] now for 16 years – it’s been really impressive to see the growth of our sport," he added.

“I used to come to America, the first grand prix in 2007 in Indianapolis, and over the years always having to educate people about what this sport is about.

“Knowing how big a sporting audience they have here and I just couldn’t understand why they weren’t drawn to sport like we were growing up, living with it.

“It’s been amazing to see the shift over the last couple of years, that the country is really embracing the sport and seem to love it just as much as we do.”

The event in Vegas is set to be one of the biggest of the F1 calendar.

Yet Hamilton is adamant it will never compare to Silverstone and the British Grand Prix, despite the sheer amount of money being invested.

“It is a big show for sure," he continued.

“And it’s never going to be like Silverstone, but maybe over time the people in this community, the community here will grow to love the sport just as we’ve had the privilege of growing up and experiencing.

“Maybe the track will be good, maybe it’ll be bad.

"It was so-so on the sim, it’s definitely not Silverstone but I think don’t knock it until you try it.”


Lewis Hamilton F1 news Las Vegas

Lewis Hamilton has arrived in Las Vegas ahead of Sunday's exciting F1 event


Meanwhile, Mercedes chief Toto Wolff recently said the team's last outing in Brazil was their worst race performance in 13 years.

And Hamilton has admitted it was a tough day for the team, while also insisted they've learned their lessons from that disaster.

“I have the worst memory, so I don’t really remember them all, it definitely felt like one of the worst," he said.

“But we just got the car in the wrong place. "There is potential obviously in the car, we had two really great races before. We just had it in the wrong window and that’s on all of us.

“But we’ve learned from it and experiences like that you learn more than the loss, so it’s painful for everybody, but everybody’s recovered, we’re back in the factory the next week, everyone’s massively motivated to finish off strong this season and I have no doubts that we can.”

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