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Lewis Hamilton says F1 title remains his priority after fashion diversion

The Guardian logo The Guardian 14-09-2018 Giles Richards
Lewis Hamilton has had a busy fortnight but says he has always remained focused on racing. © Getty Images Lewis Hamilton has had a busy fortnight but says he has always remained focused on racing. Lewis Hamilton has insisted he is as focused as ever on his task of winning a fifth Formula One world championship.

The Mercedes driver arrived for this weekend’s Singapore Grand Prix after an exceptionally busy two weeks launching his new fashion line with Tommy Hilfiger. Hamilton, who has a 30-point advantage over his title rival Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel in the world championship, believes his interests outside racing – far from a distraction – ensured he is able to bring his best to the track.

After winning the Italian Grand Prix the 33-year-old has travelled from Milan to London, Shanghai and New York for a series of events to promote his line of clothes created in partnership with Hilfiger. Seven races remain in the world championship and his Mercedes team expect Ferrari and Vettel to have the upper hand under the lights of the Marina Bay circuit. However, busy as he has been for the past two weeks, Hamilton was emphatic he had not sacrificed any attention to the day job.

Gallery: How Lewis Hamilton made his millions and how he spends them (lovemoney)

“From experience I’ve been able to move around even more than I have these past two weeks and still arrive and be able to switch into race mode,” he said. “There’s not a single moment during those two weeks that I’m not thinking about racing, not thinking about the championship, how I want to arrive. Make sure, knowing that we’re coming to a difficult race, that you need to see if you can bring more. There’s not a moment that I don’t think about it.”

The British driver has won three of the last four championships and has been open during that time of his pursuit of other interests including music and fashion but believed they had not been a hindrance. “I get a lot of energy from these different things that I do,” he said. “I find it stimulating and I think you’ll see that my results have shown that for the past several years.”

Watch: Hamilton says Mercedes have been 'the most consistent' this season (Reuters)

He has won six races to Vettel’s five this season including three of the last four and, despite Ferrari enjoying a power advantage over Mercedes, insisted he and the team would not adjust their strategy. “At the moment there’s no reason to change,” he said. “There are a lot of points still available so the approach is exactly the same as it has been all year long. It seems to be working.”

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