BARCELONA, Spain — Lewis Hamilton has dedicated his Spanish Grand Prix victory to a terminally ill fan who sent him a message ahead of the race.
Hamilton reclaimed the lead of the F1 championship in Barcelona, beating teammate Valtteri Bottas into Turn 1 and controlling the race from that point on. On Sunday morning he shared a video message sent to him by a 5-year-old fan named Harry Shaw, who was diagnosed with a rare form of cancer in August last year.
The reigning world champion’s post said: “Harry, you don’t know how much this message means to me buddy. Thank you so much, you are my inspiration today Harry. I will try to make you proud. You are such a strong boy, I wish I was as strong as you, I wanted the world to see how strong you are and ask everyone to send their best wishes and prayers to you during this hard time. Sending you love Harry. God bless you. Your friend, Lewis.”
Shaw’s fundraising page, which Hamilton also shared, said the youngster was given just seven days to live on April 29 of this year. Hamilton referenced the message immediately after the race.
“Today I was more just super inspired by this young kid that sent me a message, Harry,” Hamilton said. “He was kind of my spirit angel today. I had a really nice message from him, and we’d sent him a card and a cap, and I saw that today, and going into the race, I was looking for something for inspiration, something to grab onto, so I dedicated that race to him.
“You try and go out there and do something for someone, but it doesn’t always turn out as well as it has. I hope he’s watching. I’ll be sending him a message shortly after this that he’ll get, and we’re going to try and do something special for him.”
When he visited the TV pen after the news conference, Hamilton elaborated further and said the humbling message had helped refocus his efforts after a disappointing qualifying performance had seen him beaten to pole position by Mercedes teammate Valtteri Bottas.
“When I woke up this morning I was a bit lost about how this day was going to go, and then I saw that message and I was like ‘hey, I got you Harry, I see you’.
“So many people send such great message out there, and everyone loved his message that he sent. It meant a lot to me — he could have chosen any other driver, of course, so in the most difficult of days to have sent a message like that is very humbling and very much appreciated.”