emotional Lewis Hamilton praised the impact of his family as they helped inspire a turnaround in his fortunes at the British Grand Prix.
The 29-year-old recovered from an error of judgment in qualifying, storming from sixth on the grid to take victory at Silverstone and close the gap on title rival and Mercedes team-mate Nico Rosberg in the process.
With Rosberg forced to retire from the lead with a gearbox problem, Hamilton capitalised to the full and claimed his fifth win of the season to move to within four points of the German at the top of the standings.
The result blows the title race wide open and the 2008 world champion was in no doubt as to the part having his family at the circuit yesterday played in his redemption.
“My family have been incredible,” said a visibly moved Hamilton after the race.
“I spent a lot of time with my dad (Saturday night) just talking it out – and my brother. I just said I needed them here, I just really wanted their support.
“I do come to the races on my own and I do generally do it on my own. I have my trainer with me but I thought this weekend it would be nice to have them at least (yesterday), as Saturday was such a difficult day.”
Having set the pace on his first qualifying run in Q3 on a rainy Saturday, Hamilton was on course to take pole position until he backed off on his final lap believing the track was too wet to improve.
He was left red-faced as most other drivers set their fastest times in the final seconds and was left to start the race in sixth as Rosberg clinched pole.
When he first burst onto the Formula 1 scene Hamilton was often accompanied to races by his family. His brother Nicholas has since embarked on his own racing career but was pleased to spend some time with Lewis on Saturday evening.
“I spent all night (on Saturday) with Lewis just trying to support him as much as I can and having some fun as well,” he said.
“I hope it helped and he got a good result. We are happy and it was nice to see him smiling up there, he deserves everything he gets – it is just good to be a part of it so thank you to everyone.
“We were always relaxing, just chilling, playing on the PlayStation. It was just nice to finally get some time with him because he is so busy and I’m busy now as well.
“It is so hard for us to spend some time together and I think Saturday night was very important and put him in good stead.”
Father Anthony has played a major role in Hamilton’s rise to prominence in Formula 1 and felt entering race day with a clear mind was key to his son’s second British Grand Prix win of his career.
“Saturday he had a huge amount of thinking time and it hurt not being able to deliver for the fans or the team,” he said.
“He came back with a fresh mind and understands that mistakes can be made and he knew he also had the pace to win the race so he wasn’t too worried, I don’t think.
“It is unfortunate for Nico but whether he finished or not I think we would have won the race.
“Lewis had a huge amount of pace, looked after his tyres and had a good strategy.
“He came here having had a bad day (on Saturday) and the whole British fan-base was behind him and that gave him a big boost.”