Seven-time Formula One champion Lewis Hamilton is set to receive a knighthood from Queen Elizabeth II in recognition of his achievements in 2020, according to ESPN.
Hamilton, 35, has moved level with Michael Schumacher’s record tally of world titles — he had already surpassed the German driver for all-time race wins. He will attempt to win a record eighth championship in 2021.
The achievement is likely to be recognised with the United Kingdom’s highest honour. According to a report in The Times, Hamilton will be named in the Queen’s new year’s honours list, which will make him known formally as Sir Lewis Hamilton.
Hamilton has already been on the list once before. He was named a ‘Member of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire’ (MBE) after his first championship in 2008.
Calls for him to be knighted have only intensified recently, with Hamilton claiming six of the last seven championships.
The Times report says UK prime minister Boris Johnson personally recommended Hamilton for his work on track and off track, having frequently spoken out against racism. Hamilton, the only Black driver in F1 history, has taken the knee ahead of every race this year, as well as wearing t-shirts saying ‘Black Lives Matter’ and, at the Tuscan Grand Prix, ‘Arrest The Cops Who Killed Breonna Taylor’.
Hamilton also launched the Hamilton Commission, which he hopes will help to diversify motor racing.