Lewis Hamilton hungrier than ever to win world title as he revs up for French Grand Prix

LEWIS HAMILTON claims he is motivated more than ever to retain his F1 crown this season.

The Brit is looking to defend his title and claim a fifth drivers' championship, which would put him joint-second on the all-time list, tied with Juan Manuel Fangio and behind seven-time champ, Michael Schumacher.

 Lewis Hamilton celebrates as he wins his fourth world title at the Mexico Grand Prix last year

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Lewis Hamilton celebrates as he wins his fourth world title at the Mexico Grand Prix last year

Hamilton, who is currently one point behind Sebastian Vettel in the championship, has yet to sign a new contract with Mercedes beyond this season.

However, ahead of this weekend's French GP, the 33-year-old  insists he still has the motivation to compete in Formula One.

He said: "There are a lot of different things that motivate me. My desire to win this championship is greater than it's ever been.

"I do all of these different things in my life and I have all of these other interests, but none of this would be possible without racing.

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Hamilton acknowledges that he owes racing everything after building up a huge fortune and fan base

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"At the core of me is racing, above everything else. So much time, dedication and sacrifice has gone into getting where I am today and I love what I do. I love the competition and the challenge."

Hamilton will be boosted in France by Mercedes' latest engine, which he hopes will allow him to match the speed of Vettel's Ferrari.

The two have traded wins in this season's opening seven races, while Red Bull's Daniel Ricciardo has also been on the top step of the podium on two occasions.

And Hamilton says he is relishing the three-way fight between himself, Vettel and Ricciardo.


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 Sebastian Vettel is one point ahead of Hamilton in this year's race for the title

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Sebastian Vettel is one point ahead of Hamilton in this year's race for the title

"My dad told me never to give up," he told Paper Magazine. "It is quite a simple piece of advice, which is easier said than done.

"I am also quite free-minded and I truly believe that if I apply myself I can do absolutely anything.

"Maybe I will fail the first few times, or even 100 times, but I know eventually I will get there in whatever it is that I do.

"I encourage people to listen to their own minds and ignore those who restrict them or knock them off the path to their dreams.

 Ricciardo is in the mix for the title this year

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Ricciardo is in the mix for the title this year

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"You only have one life, that's my thinking. There are definitely times when I have been nervous, but I don't think that's a bad thing.

"There are only 21 races and every one is so crucial that you can't afford to make a mistake.

"When you practice and practice and practice and then you don't achieve what you know you are capable of doing, it's painful.

"When you envisage your goal, you become more confident.

"You need to worry less about your surroundings; if you are the best that you can be, that's all you can do."

2018 British Grand Prix at Silverstone on  5 to 8 July.  Tickets still available from £40

www.silverstone.co.uk

 

LEWIS HAMILTON claims he is motivated more than ever to retain his F1 crown this season.