Lewis Hamilton named the BBC’s Sports Personality of Year after eventful title season

Lewis Hamilton BBC award
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LONDON — Seven-time Formula One champion Lewis Hamilton capped another successful year by claiming the BBC Sports Personality of the Year award Sunday.

The 35-year-old Mercedes driver, who equaled Michael Schumacher’s record of seven F1 titles last month, overcame Jordan Henderson and Hollie Doyle to win the British broadcaster’s prestigious prize in a public vote.

Hamilton has been a vocal advocate in support of the Black Lives Matter movement, joining a march in London and creating a council to diversity F1. He has been resolute about his outspoken activism, vowing “he won’t give up this platform” after wearing a shirt reading “Arrest The Cops Who Killed Breonna Taylor” before and after his Sept. 13 victory at Mugello.

“I been thinking of all those who voted to support me last night, I am truly so grateful,” Hamilton wrote in thanking fans in a heartfelt social media post. “Thank you to the British public for this honour, it means the most because it comes from you. I’m sending you all positivity. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.”

Hamilton also won the BBC prize in 2014.

Doyle broke her own record for the most victories in a calendar year by a female jockey before enjoying a Champions Day double at Ascot – including her first Group One aboard Glen Shiel in the British Champions Sprint.

England midfielder Henderson led Liverpool to its first Premier League title in 30 years. Henderson was also praised for his role in the #PlayersTogether campaign, which raised funds for National Health Service charities during the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

Hamilton missed the Dec. 6 race at Bahrain after contracting COVID-19. He returned to finish third in the season finale at Abu Dhabi despite still feeling under the weather.

He recently posted that he lost 4 kg and significant muscle mass while recovering from the virus and had been working out to regain his strength.

Santino Ferrucci will drive No. 14 for AJ Foyt Racing full time in 2023 IndyCar season

Santino Ferrucci AJ Foyt
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Santino Ferrucci will return to full-time racing in the NTT IndyCar Series next season, joining AJ Foyt Racing.

Ferrucci had made eight IndyCar starts with three teams since his last full-time season in 2020 while also racing part time in the NASCAR Xfinity Series this year.

He will drive the storied No. 14 Dallara-Chevrolet for four-time Indy 500 winner A.J. Foyt’s team, which will field the car from its Waller, Texas headquarters.

“It’s incredibly exciting to be back in the INDYCAR Series full time,” Ferrucci said in a team release. “Being a part-time driver over the last two years has been hard for me, personally. I’m a race car driver, and I want to compete. Working with different teams has been exciting, and I’m proud that no matter which car I’ve raced, I’ve always shown speed and consistency. I couldn’t be more excited to join AJ Foyt Racing in the 14 Chevy. I can’t wait to make the best of it.”

Ferrucci, 24, had finished a career-best fourth in IndyCar four times, including the 104th Indy 500 in 2020. He was the 2019 Indy 500 rookie of the year with a sixth.

In nine Xfinity starts since 2021, Ferrucci has a career-best finish of 13th at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.

“I am thrilled to welcome Santino to the team,” Larry Foyt said in a release. “He’s shown a knack for getting toward the front of the field, and I think he is a racer who moves forward on race day. A.J. sees the fire in him and has enjoyed their meetings together. I think Santino’s experience will help his rookie teammate as well, so he is a great addition to our roster.”

Ferrucci will be teamed at AJ Foyt Racing with Benjamin Pedersen, who finished fifth in the 2022 Indy Lights standings. The team has yet to specify the number for Pedersen’s entry, which will be fielded out of its Indianapolis race shop.

Foyt’s two full-time drivers last season were Dalton Kellett and Kyle Kirkwood, who is moving to Andretti Autosport.