Hamilton caught Rosberg once, and he’ll do it again

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Lewis Hamilton has vowed to make up for his second retirement of the season at the Canadian Grand Prix that saw him fall 22 points behind teammate Nico Rosberg in the drivers’ championship.

Rosberg’s lead is the biggest that it has been since the Australian Grand Prix, where he won the race to take a 25-point lead over Hamilton after the latter’s retirement from the race.

In Canada, both Mercedes cars were hit with an ERS problem, causing Hamilton to retire. Rosberg managed the problem and came home in second place, extending his lead at the top of the standings.

After winning four straight races to overhaul Rosberg’s first advantage, Hamilton is frustrated to have dropped back once again, but he is ready to go on another winning streak to make up for it.

“Montreal was a bit of a strange one for me,” he said. “I felt I had the pace right from the beginning of the weekend, but things just never quite came together. It’s frustrating when these things are out of your hands.

“The two DNFs so far this season have not been ideal but that’s racing and there’s a long, long way to go. I caught up before and I can catch up again. It’s going to take another four wins to make the difference so I’m going to do my best to get those results.”

Hamilton has now turned his attention to next weekend’s Austrian Grand Prix, which has been revived for 2014 after eleven years away. The Briton is relishing the opportunity to race at a new circuit, and he is gunning to claim his fifth win of the season in Spielberg.

“I’ve never driven the circuit but I’ve been working on it in the simulator and I’m sure I’ll learn it pretty quickly when we get out on track,” Hamilton said. “It’s always exciting to go to a new venue, so it should be an interesting weekend. I’m feeling good in the car right now and I’ll be pushing flat out to come away with maximum points this time around.”

Lewis Hamilton receives Daytona 500 invitation from Bubba Wallace

Lewis Hamilton Bubba Wallace
Rudy Carezzevoli/Getty Images
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Lewis Hamilton is a fan of the new NASCAR Cup Series team formed by Denny Hamlin and Michael Jordan to field a car for Bubba Wallace.

Will the six-time Formula One champion also be a fan in person at a NASCAR race in the near future?

Wallace is hoping so.

After Hamilton tweeted his support Tuesday morning about the news of a Hamlin-Jordan-Wallace team making its debut with the 2021 season, Wallace responded with a sly invitation to the Daytona 500.

Much would need to be worked out, starting with how much garage and grandstand access would be afforded for a 2021 season opener that likely would occur during a still ongoing novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

But it would seem fitting given that Hamilton and Wallace have been two of the world’s most outspoken Black athletes about the quest for diversity and racial justice. Hamilton recently reaffirmed his commitment to activism after his donning a Breonna Taylor shirt sparked an FIA inquiry.

The idea of Hamilton attending the season opener already had legs, too. The Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 driver has expressed a desire to race the Daytona 500 after he has retired from Formula One.

He was a spectator (with racing legend Mario Andretti) at four-time champion Jeff Gordon’s final Cup race as a full-time in the 2015 season finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway. In 2011, Hamilton swapped cars with three-time champion Tony Stewart at Watkins Glen International.

Having rubbed shoulders with other racing greats so often, it only would be fitting if Hamilton — who is one victory from tying Michael Schumacher’s career record and also could tie the F1 record with a seventh championship this season — spent some time with the greatest basketball player of all time.

Jeff Gordon was flanked by Mario Andretti and Lewis Hamilton before the 2015 Cup season finale at Homestead-Miami Speedway (Jared C. Tilton/NASCAR via Getty Images).