Hamilton says leg cramp made him lift off several times

Lewis Hamilton has revealed that he had to lift off several times on the start-finish straight in the closing stages of the Portuguese Grand Prix after suffering from leg cramp.

Hamilton says leg cramp made him lift off several times

The world champion delivered a dominant performance at the Algarve circuit to grab a record-breaking 92nd Formula 1 career win – beating the record previously held by Michael Schumacher.

But it was not all plain sailing for the Briton, who said that he faced a battle with his right calf muscle towards the end of the race.

"You know it's an incredibly physical sport but I had a cramp in my right calf," he said after his victory.

"So I was lifting quite often down the straight because it was about to pull. [It was] pretty painful, but I had to somehow get through it because it is what it is. You can't lift the whole lap."

Hamilton's victory came despite a tricky first lap where he fell down the order on the opening lap as he struggled to get his medium tyres up to temperature on the slightly damp track.

"They said it was going to rain straight after the race but we got some spitting just at the start," he said.

"I had a good start but then going into turn seven I had a huge oversteer moment. And, you know, I didn't know what was next.

"So I really backed off massively and arguably I should have probably tried to defend from Valtteri, but I was like, 'No, I'll come back later on'. And fortunately, that's what I was able to do so."

Asked what it meant to take the record-breaking 92nd career win, Hamilton said: "It's going to take some time for it to fully sink in, but you know I was still pushing flat out coming across the line. I'm still very much in race mode mentally. But yeah, I can't find the words at the moment."

Hamilton's victory meant he further extended his lead at the head of the world championship over teammate Valtteri Bottas to 77 points, with five races to go.

shares
comments

Related video

Portuguese GP: Hamilton scores record-breaking 92nd win
Previous article

Portuguese GP: Hamilton scores record-breaking 92nd win

Next article

Sainz: Overtaking Mercedes drivers was "pretty easy"

Sainz: Overtaking Mercedes drivers was "pretty easy"
Load comments
Saudi Arabian Grand Prix Driver Ratings Prime

Saudi Arabian Grand Prix Driver Ratings

An ill-tempered Saudi Grand Prix made Formula 1 more soap opera than sporting spectacle at times, but there were some strong performances up and down the field on the world championship's first visit to Jeddah

How the Jeddah F1 race became a one-sitting Netflix drama series Prime

How the Jeddah F1 race became a one-sitting Netflix drama series

The inaugural Saudi Arabian Grand Prix was a race packed full of incident as Formula 1 2021's title contenders repeatedly clashed on track. Lewis Hamilton won out over Max Verstappen to level the scores heading into next weekend's Abu Dhabi finale, as Jeddah turned F1 into a drama series

Formula 1
Dec 6, 2021
The impressive attitude that earned Albon his second F1 chance Prime

The impressive attitude that earned Albon his second F1 chance

Dropped by Red Bull last season, Alexander Albon has fought back into a Formula 1 seat with Williams. ALEX KALINAUCKAS explains what Albon has done to earn the place soon to be vacated by the highly rated George Russell

Formula 1
Dec 5, 2021
The factors that could negate Red Bull's practice gap to Mercedes Prime

The factors that could negate Red Bull's practice gap to Mercedes

Mercedes led the way in practice for Formula 1’s first race in Jeddah, where Red Bull was off the pace on both single-lap and long runs. But, if Max Verstappen can reverse the results on Saturday, factors familiar in motorsport’s main electric single-seater category could be decisive in another close battle with Lewis Hamilton...

Formula 1
Dec 4, 2021
Why Norris doesn’t expect Mr Nice Guy praise for much longer Prime

Why Norris doesn’t expect Mr Nice Guy praise for much longer

Earning praise from rivals has been a welcome sign that Lando Norris is becoming established among Formula 1's elite. But the McLaren driver is confident that his team's upward curve can put him in the mix to contend for titles in the future, when he's hoping the compliments will be replaced by being deemed an equal adversary

Formula 1
Dec 2, 2021
What Ferrari still needs to improve to return to F1 title contention Prime

What Ferrari still needs to improve to return to F1 title contention

After a disastrous 2020 in which it slumped to sixth in the F1 constructors' standings, Ferrari has rebounded strongly and is on course to finish third - despite regulations that forced it to carryover much of its forgettable SF1000 machine. Yet while it can be pleased with its improvement, there are still steps it must make if 2022 is to yield a return to winning ways

Formula 1
Dec 2, 2021
How F1 teams and personnel react in pressurised situations Prime

How F1 teams and personnel react in pressurised situations

OPINION: The pressure is firmly on Red Bull and Mercedes as Formula 1 2021 embarks on its final double-header. How the respective teams deal with that will be a crucial factor in deciding the outcome of the drivers' and constructors' championships, as Motorsport.com's technical consultant and ex-McLaren F1 engineer Tim Wright explains.

Formula 1
Dec 1, 2021
How getting sacked from Benetton made Mercedes' Allison Prime

How getting sacked from Benetton made Mercedes' Allison

He’s had a hand in world championship-winning Formula 1 cars for Benetton, Renault and Mercedes, and was also a cog in the Schumacher-Ferrari axis. Having recently ‘moved upstairs’ as Mercedes chief technical officer, James Allison tells Stuart Codling about his career path and why being axed by Benetton was one of the best things that ever happened to him.

Formula 1
Nov 28, 2021