F1: Lewis Hamilton not interested in winning an “easy” championship

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Lewis Hamilton’s second World Championship was decided in the final race of the 2014 season in Abu Dhabi. And in 2008, his first World Championship was decided in the final corner at Interlagos.

But despite having cut it close twice before attaining Formula One’s ultimate glory, the Mercedes man hopes his third World Championship – if and/or when it comes – doesn’t involve him cruising to the title.

“I don’t think you ever want to have it easy,” Hamilton said Friday in Doha, Qatar during the FIA’s year-end Prize Giving Ceremony. “You always want to have a fight. Easy championships, I don’t know, they’re just not as…You want that climax.

“Obviously in the last race, it was a climax – going into the last race. Obviously [Nico Rosberg’s] car had an issue, so then from halfway through the race, the pressure was different to having to defend in the race. But still, throughout the whole year, just trying to keep your cool, stay focused and all those kinds of things. It was great.”

Now, Hamilton will try to do with the Silver Arrows what he couldn’t do with McLaren in 2009 – stay at the head of the pack. That particular season saw Hamilton slip to fifth in the standings partly due to first-half difficulties with the MP4-24 machine.

But with next year’s regulations more or less being, as Hamilton put it himself, an “evolution” from this year, he hopes to be in contention again versus stiff competition from inside his team with Nico Rosberg and outside Mercedes as well.

“The good thing about this period of time in Formula One is that when I won the championship in 2008, the following year, we had a year like this with some new rules and regulations and as a team, we didn’t do a good job to adapt to that, so I didn’t have a chance to fight to keep my championship,” Hamilton explained.

“Next year will be an evolution of this year’s car so I’m hoping that we’ll be at least able to fight. Nico’s going to come back stronger and I’ll have to make sure I come back even stronger to stay ahead of him.

“You know Daniel Ricciardo has been doing an amazing job, it will be interesting to see what Fernando [Alonso] does in his car. It’s very difficult to know, but I don’t particularly care who’s behind. You don’t care, do you? You just want to look ahead.”

Andretti United team names drivers for inaugural Extreme E season

Extreme E drivers Andretti
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The Extreme E team formed by Andretti Autosport and United Autosports named Catie Munnings and Timmy Hansen as its drivers Monday for the series’ inaugural 2021 season.

Munnings is a successful veteran of rally series. Hansen is a past winner and champion in the World Rallycross Championship.

They both will race in the environmentally conscious electric SUV series that will hold events in five areas around the world that are threatened by climate change. Chip Ganassi Racing and six-time Formula One champion Lewis Hamilton also are fielding cars in Extreme E, which will feature male and female co-drivers on every team.

Catie Munnings

“I’m so excited to join Andretti United Extreme E,” Munnings said in a release. ““I was really intrigued when I first heard about Extreme E, I just knew I had to be involved. The male / female racing partnership is a fantastic and exciting new concept. The season has incredible locations and the racing will be very exciting. It will be a new challenge for the teams and drivers, and I’m so thrilled to be working with such a strong team.

“The championship is a really innovative concept, it’s combining motorsport and science and will produce an important legacy in each race location. Bringing the platform that motorsport has in line with the awareness that the planet needs right now is awesome and a really important message.”

Timmy Hansen

Said Hansen: “Going into the Extreme E will be a new chapter in my career, one that I am extremely excited about. It is something brand new, not only for me, but the whole of motorsport. The format is something

we’ve never seen before. I’m also delighted to be able to carry the message of something bigger – talking about the environment and doing something good for the world – that’s something that really drives me. It’s going to be a big adventure in life to see these locations and I’m going to do my best in carrying this responsibility and hopefully making people aware of the challenges we have in the world, together with our passion for racing.”