Silverstone, Northamptonshire - Lewis Hamilton had a clear message after equaling the record number of British Grand Prix wins: I’ll do it my way.
Hamilton’s preparation for this race was widely derided after he skipped an F1 promotional event in London last week in favour of a two-day break in Greece.
But he delivered the perfect riposte to those who booed his name in Trafalgar Square with a dominant performance at Silverstone, where he matched Jim Clark and Alain Prost’s five wins in the race.
"There’s no need to question my preparations," said Hamilton. "If you don’t know my preparations are on point by now, then I guess you never will. I’m very fortunate that I know what is right for me.
"I know how to get myself ready. If I didn’t I wouldn’t have the wins that I have. I train myself and know what to do. This weekend has shown it. I’m really happy to be able to perform the way I have after all the negativity. You could see the pace I had. I was under control and didn’t have any slips or lack of focus."
'It was the perfect weekend'
Hamilton secured his fourth consecutive Silverstone win with minimum fuss, leading from pole to flag, and said afterwards that he has reached his peak.
"I feel like this is the best I’ve ever driven," he said. "I’m loving driving and feel like I’m in my prime. The car felt great and it was a generally faultless weekend. I’m proud of everyone.
The winner’s champagne tasted even sweeter for Hamilton after title rival Sebastian Vettel was forced to pit on the penultimate lap following a tyre failure. It meant the German dropped from fourth to seventh, which saw his championship lead over Hamilton cut from 20 points to just one at the season’s halfway point.
"Bring it on," Hamilton said of the impending title fight. "I feel at my best. The last couple of races haven’t reflected the great work within the team but finally this weekend we were able to really show it."