The name Lewis seems to be synonymous to the word Speed. McLaren Mercedes F1 driver Lewis Hamilton is named after the great American Olympian sprinter Carl Lewis by his parents. Speed appears to be part of his personality.
The young Hamilton was a karting prodigy in his hometown and destined to make it big in auto racing. He was very determined to be a race driver when at the age of 10, he introduced himself to McLaren principal Ron Dennis to tell him that he will be racing for McLaren Mercedes in the future.
In the coming years, he was making a name for himself in karting and breaking records in the sport. The McLaren big boss signed the young driver to a stint in GP2 racing. He was a champion in his inaugural season with GP2.
In 2007, Lewis Hamilton was signed up as principal driver for McLaren F1 team alongside with former world champion Fernando Alonso. He set the pace in F1 racing in its 2007 season. A number of records were registered by the British driver in his rookie year as an F1 driver. The young Brit was having an impressive run for the driver's championship with a 17-point lead over Ferrari's Kimi Raikkonen with two races remaining in the season.
A single point between him and Raikkonen cost him the driver's championship in his maiden season. His defeat was attributed to seventh place finish in Brazil and a retirement in the Chinese GP. It was a heartbreaking lost for the young British driver who has been successful in most of his races in the past.
The following season, Hamilton made up for his defeat with an error-free race driving the whole GP season of 2008. He snatched the driver's championship trophy from Ferrari's Felipe Massa via a single-point, come-from-behind win at a rain-soaked Interlagos race and installing himself as the youngest ever F1 world champion. This accentuates his superb and exceptional driving skills in F1 with this victory.
The 2009 GP season was unsympathetic to the young F1 champion with lots of problems and hitches encountered throughout the season. McLaren was not able to manufacture a reliable F1 car for this season. It encountered lots of mechanical and engine problems that dropped both McLaren drivers from the championship race. Hamilton was also involved in the 'Liegate' scandal where Hamilton deceived race stewards in the Australian GP. The young Briton was distraught with the turn of events that he contemplated in quitting Formula One. However, he went to win two race wins and ended the season as the fastest driver on the grid.
The young McLaren driver has learned the important, high-profile lessons of 2009 and made him more matured and calm in his races. He silenced his critics with his ability to cope with the pressure of F1, race bumper-to-bumper to established F1 champions, race in any weather with consistency and come out of the back of the grid to snatch the lead in the race.
McLaren Mercedes is now back in contention with a reliable F1 car and a new driver in last season's champion Jenson Button. The young black driver won his first race of the 2010 season at the Turkish GP over two Red Bulls. The win catapulted him to second place in the driver's championship after seven GP races and an arm's length only of frontrunner Red Bull Mark Webber. Team McLaren has benefitted much on the win of their two British drivers and catapulted the team to lead the constructor's championship.
Lewis Hamilton, the first youngest black world champion driver, live up to his namesake as one of the greatest sprinter of all time while he breaks the speed limit in recording F1 records.