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Hakkinen: Hamilton can be the greatest

Mika Hakkinen and Lewis HamiltonTwo-time world champion Mika Hakkinen believes Lewis Hamilton could become the greatest driver Formula One has seen.

The British driver won his first championship this year, becoming the youngest men to achieve the feat at only 23.

Hamilton had finished in second place in his rookie season in 2008, having won four races.

Former McLaren driver Hakkinen sees no reason why the Briton cannot become the greatest driver if he continues with his progression.

"Lewis drives so fast, he is always going to make mistakes," Hakkinen told the Times newspaper. "Driving like that makes anything possible.

"But, believe me, this guy is good. He is a young guy, he is with a great team and he has shown great commitment to the team for a long period. He has a fantastic fitness programme so that he will have the energy to drive for years to maximise his performance for a long time to come.

"I just do not see why he cannot become the best there is. He is only in his second year in Formula One and that is a very high-pressure environment. But he deals with it. He has youth and talent on his side. He can be the greatest."

He added: "You have got a good guy there. Lewis is so talented and, better than that, he is a great guy with a great personality. He is going to be a great role model for kids around the world. I don't think you could find a better guy than him anywhere."

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