Lewis Hamilton explains the meanings behind his tattoos

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Lewis Hamilton recently posted a video for GQ in which he took time off the track to talk about something else close to him - his tattoos.

He hasn't tried to disguise the body art that occupies most of his body and he was only too pleased to give away the stories behind the ink.

It's fairly well known that Hamilton has a cross on his back with angel wings and the words 'Still I Rise' running across his shoulder blades.

The inspiration for the giant tattoo he credits to a certain deceased rapper and it wasn't just a quick job either.

"I mean, the idea originally came from Tupac who was my favourite rapper," he said.

"It took like, I think 10 hours or something like that, just in one go, straightaway."

The cross started off the pattern that often follows a first tattoo - a series of more tattoos.

"Once you kinda get your first one, you kind of move on to, what next can I get?"

Hamilton is always looking for for something new that has a connection to him, something that has meaning.

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On his shoulder and chest, he has a lion's head roaring, which he says is his favourite of all the tattoos on his body.

"I feel like I'm a lion at heart... king of the jungle," he explains, and maybe uses this as a symbol of his never give in attitude in Formula One. "They're just ferocious, aggressive, there's a passion."

The words 'family' and 'faith' also appear on his shoulder region because he is very close to his family and wanted to reflect that in some way.

Hamilton also has a compass marking on his chest and says that it's his unlikely religious connection that symbolises this tattoo.

"I'll leave church on a Sunday thinking... I've really gained my direction where to go. Church is really my compass."

It's an interesting insight into the 2017 Championship winner's life, who is often seen as a chalk and cheese character in the press.

It goes to prove that sports celebrities are normal people underneath all the fame. All they need is the platform.

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