Motor racing: Lewis Hamilton wins big at virtual FIA prizegiving

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Seven times world champion Lewis Hamilton was the big winner as Formula One’s governing body conducted its annual awards ceremony by video conferencing on Friday night due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Mercedes driver was voted Personality of the Year by permanently accredited media and also received a joint FIA President Award with Ferrari great Michael Schumacher, the only other seven times champion.

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In addition, Hamilton received the Automobile Club d’Italia (ACI) Trophy as highest points scorer from an unprecedented three Formula One races held in Italy.

The 35-year-old Briton won at Imola and Mugello and placed seventh at Monza, setting the fastest laps at all three circuits.

Hamilton took his career tally to a record 95 wins that, combined with his record-equalling seven titles, made him the most successful F1 driver of all time.

Bahrain Grand Prix marshals and the medical car team of Ian Roberts and Alan van der Merwe also received an FIA President’s award for helping French driver Romain Grosjean escape from a fireball after his car penetrated a barrier and split in two.

Japan’s Yuki Tsunoda, who is graduating to Formula One with AlphaTauri next year, was named Rookie of the Year while fans voted Alfa Romeo’s Kimi Raikkonen winner of the Action of the Year.

“2020 has been an unprecedented year and it’s remarkable to be here and to be able to honor our champions,” commented FIA President Jean Todt.

“The most important thing is that, through creativity and resourcefulness, we have been able to organize championships – and we have champions to celebrate.”

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