We all know that Lewis Hamilton is a supreme driver but once again he demonstrated his class outside of the cockpit with a hugely generous gesture last night at the F1 world championship awards ceremony in Paris last night.
In a lavish ceremony in Versailles, Hamilton was presented with his world championship trophy, a title he won by claiming 9 GP victories in what was another glorious season for the Mercedes driver. The four-time world champion then invited British teenager Billy Monger onto the stage to share the acclaim with him.
A wonderful gesture as this year Monger had to overcome a horrific crash in a Formula Four race at Donnington Park which left him with appalling injuries that required the amputation of his lower legs.
The heroic teenager has already returned to racing and his supreme bravery was not forgotten by Hamilton on this special night.
He walked out onto stage on prosthetic limbs to a huge ovation and a warm embrace from the world champion - scroll down to see Hamilton's acceptance speech and the moment Monger was welcomed on stage.
Hamilton is a huge admirer of Monger and had previously invited him to be a special guest of his at this year's Silverstone GP. Speaking at the time, Hamilton outlined his enormous respect for Monger.
"I think he's frigging awesome so that's why I invited him down and his family. When I was in the garage I could see him in my mirror.
"Hopefully going to get him in my car at some stage because I am sure he wants to sit in the car. He's already racing, already back in the racing car, a bit like Alex Zanardi, who for me blows my mind. I think he's just an incredible human being, he's gone onto win gold medals and I know this kid is going to do the same thing."
The world champion was typically gracious in accepting his award from FIA president Jean Todt in the sumptuous surroundings of the 18th-century palace.
"This has been an amazing year," a humble Hamilton told the star-studded audience, “I hope that next year’s an even better year for all of you. I know for me that I‘m going to try to do better.”
A great champion on and off the track.
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