Hamilton could win 2015 title by mid-year, says father
Anthony Hamilton thinks his son Lewis could wrap up the 2015 world championship by the middle of the season if he avoids the bad luck which plagued him last season.
Hamilton won his second world championship at the 2014 finale, claiming 11 wins to beat Mercedes team-mate Nico Rosberg to the title. Rosberg won five races, with Hamilton playing catch up from retirement at the season opener in Australia and a string of bad luck in the middle of the year.
Mercedes should remain the team to beat in 2015 and Hamilton's father does not think the 30-year-old will need to wait until the season finale to wrap up world title number three.
"You never know, but I think if you look at what Lewis went through last year, we started the year where we felt that if everything had gone well, by mid-year he probably would have won the championship," Hamilton Sr told Sky Sports. "I think the same thing could potentially happen this year - if he starts well, if the car is good, performance is good, I think Lewis could win the championship again this year."
Hamilton does not think the tension between his son and Rosberg, which reached a high point after their clash at the Belgian Grand Prix, has had any impact on their friendship.
"Yes, but I think it will be a different kind of rivalry this year," he said when asked if tensions could flare up again in 2015. "I think the respect between them will have grown immensely and I think both guys are sensitive for each other. It was tough on Nico to come so close but not get the championship, and it was tough on Lewis.
"I think there is going to be a huge amount of respect for each other and a lot of give and take and I think this season is going to be the most interesting between those guys. At the end of the day it is competition and there is a huge respect and friendship between both boys and it has been there a long, long time - those boys have known each other since they were 13."