(The Guardian) A stunning 12 months for Lewis Hamilton on and off the track, which included equalling Michael Schumacher’s record of seven Formula One titles and becoming an increasingly powerful voice for diversity in his sport, has ended with a knighthood in the new year honours list. The 35-year-old becomes the fourth F1 driver to be knighted after two fellow Britons, Sir Stirling Moss and Sir Jackie Stewart, and Australia’s Sir Jack Brabham.
There had been a question mark over whether Hamilton, who also surpassed Schumacher’s record of grand prix victories in 2020, would be knighted given he lives in the tax haven of Monaco. But it was reported that the prime minister, Boris Johnson, had personally intervened to ensure Hamilton would be rewarded for his sporting achievements.
It was confirmed on Wednesday that Hamilton, who in September also set up a commission to analyse the lack of diversity in motor racing, had been recognised through the “diplomatic and overseas” list rather than the domestic list to avoid controversy over his tax returns.