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Who could stop Lewis Hamilton’s Championship Run?

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Who could stop Lewis Hamilton’s Championship Run?

Lewis Hamilton, unsurprisingly, won his seventh world title this season to bring him on par with Michael Schumacher but who is the likely contender to stop him?

Despite Valtteri Bottas’ win in the season opener and Max Verstappen’s win during F1’s 70th Anniversary, Hamilton charged towards his record-equalling seventh world title after he secured victory in Turkey’s Intercity Istanbul Park. 

While some fans love Hamilton’s impressive run, others hate the predictable nature of the motorsport as Mercedes and the seven-time world champion seem to be in unstoppable form. 

Seemingly unchallenged for world championships since Nico Rosberg’s title win in 2016, who could stop Hamilton’s championship run?

 

George Russell

Understandably, George Russell will not be facing a championship fight next year as he retained his seat at Williams alongside Nicholas Latifi for 2021. 

However, he put in an incredible performance during the Sakhir Grand Prix when he looked likely to score his first points, maiden podium and win when he replaced, Covid-strickened, Hamilton. 

There’s a high chance the 2021 season will be Russell’s final year at Williams and he will obtain a seat for Mercedes for the 2022 season.

Hypothetically, if Russell secures a seat in Mercedes for 22, the Briton has the perfect opportunity to get himself a title and stop Hamilton’s championship run. 

 

Charles Leclerc

While Ferrari have admitted they cannot be competitive before the 2022 season. Charles Leclerc is another youngster who looks to be world championship material. 

Whether or not the Italian outfit will be a title-threatening outfit in 22 is another matter but if they can fight for the drivers championship, Leclerc would be in the running for the title. 

Although Carlos Sainz would give the Monegasque a run for his money in Ferrari’s first competitive season since 2019. 

 

Sebastian Vettel

After Racing Point obtained fourth in the constructors championship, it could lay the foundation needed for the Silverstone-based outfit to bring in some silverware.  

While it’s unlikely they will be fighting for the constructors title, Sebastian Vettel – a four-time world champion – could give Hamilton a run for the championship, an opportunity his final season at Ferrari couldn’t provide. 

But this could take a few seasons to materialise for the former world champion – seasons he may not have.

 

Valtteri Bottas

After he replaced Rosberg in 2016, when the German departed F1. Bottas has been given the mantle to take the fight to Hamilton for a world championship. 

However, for the past four years, he has failed.

With the same equipment as the Briton, Bottas seems to get a good start in the season openers but fails to gain traction as he is overtaken by the defending world champion, plagued with mistakes, slow-starts or terminal issues that see him retire from a race.

The 2021 season could be Bottas’ final chance to take the championship fight to Hamilton after Russell’s impressive performance in Bahrain. 

 

Max Verstappen

Verstappen is the likely contender to put a stop to Hamilton’s championship form. While teammates have come and gone for the Dutchman, Red Bull remain as one of the closest rivals against Mercedes. 

In hindsight, if the Dutch driver hadn’t suffered five DNF’s across the 2020 season we could have seen him in P2 within the drivers standings.  

However, for him to take a worthy fight to Hamilton, Red Bull need to bridge the performance gap that has seen the Silver Arrows dominate the turbo-hybrid era.

But, if they can tighten the gap, it won’t be surprising if the Dutchman halt’s the Briton’s championship run in the coming seasons.

 

We hope you enjoyed this article ‘Who could stop Lewis Hamilton’s Championship run?’. Who do you think will be Lewis Hamilton’s closest challenger next season? Let us know!

 

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Kamron is currently a third-year student, studying Sports Journalism at the University of Sunderland. While he enjoys watching his local teams: Newcastle United and Whitley Warriors, Kamron also enjoys other sports such as Formula One and the NBA.

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