Lewis Hamilton had a memorable year in 2020, winning 11 of the 16 Formula 1 races in which he competed and securing the driver's championship for the seventh time. Now he has added another trophy to his collection after breaking Michael Schumacher's record for most race wins. Hamilton was named the 2020 BBC Sports Personality of the Year.
The F1 driver received the honor during a ceremony on Sunday. He accepted the award in front of 1,000 virtual fans, as well as millions of BBC One viewers. This is the second time that Hamilton has won the award. He previously received the honor in 2014, the year he won his second F1 World Championship, and has been a runner-up four separate times.
I been thinking of all those who voted to support me last night, I am truly so grateful. Thank you to the British public for this honour, it means the most because it comes from you. I’m sending you all positivity. Thank you from the bottom of my heart. #SPOTY pic.twitter.com/yLs6znMFqK— Lewis Hamilton (@LewisHamilton) December 21, 2020
The British public voted to give Hamilton the award after examining a stacked list of contestants. He beat out second-placed Jordan Henderson, captain of the Premier League winners Liverpool FC, as well as Hollie Doyle, a jockey. Doyle is paving the way for women in horse racing and secured the highest-ever finish by a woman in the UK's Flat Jockeys' Championship.
"I want to say congratulations to all the incredible nominees," Hamilton said while accepting the award. "I'm so proud of what they have achieved and I want to say thank you to everyone that has voted for me. I wasn't expecting this knowing there's so many great contenders.
"I want to say Merry Christmas to everyone," Hamilton added. "It's been such an unusual year and I want to mention all the front line workers and all the children round the world, I want you to try and stay positive through this difficult time, I'm sending you all positivity. Thank you from the bottom of my heart."
Only 35-years-old, Hamilton is statistically the best driver in F1 history, but he will have the opportunity to cement his legacy in 2021. He already holds the record for most Grand Prix wins and most pole positions. He currently sits in a tie with Schumacher for most F1 World Championships (7). If he repeats in 2021, he will sit alone at the top of the sport.