Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel says Lewis Hamilton fully deserves his success in Formula 1 after the Mercedes driver sealed his sixth title in the United States Grand Prix.
Vettel retired from the US GP after suffering a left-rear suspension failure, and the Ferrari driver took the pre-podium green room to speak to Hamilton and offer his congratulations.
The Ferrari driver had fallen out of title contention due to a string of high-profile errors and his team’s failure to consistently capitalise on its package’s strength.
Reflecting on his season and his chat with Hamilton, Vettel said: “I think now is the time to write as many good things as you can [about Hamilton’s success].
“I think if somebody wins the title six times, then he deserves all of it. That is what I told him as well.
“I am happy for him. I am not happy that we are not in contention this year and we are so far back.
“We need to respect what he achieved the last years, and also this year, plus together with his team how strong they have been. I am happy for him. But less happy for us.”
Vettel’s team-mate Charles Leclerc notably battled Hamilton for his first F1 victory at Spa earlier this year.
Asked for his take on Hamilton’s success, Leclerc said: “On my side, I didn’t even win one world title.
“Only one world title is already a huge achievement, so to win six is just incredible.
“I think he deserves it. He has done an incredible season. I grew up watching him on TV and just a huge congratulations to him.”