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Hamilton reveals French GP weight loss after drinks malfunction

The seven-time world champion achieved his best finish of a tumultuous 2022 season to date at the Circuit Paul Ricard in Le Castellet on Sunday afternoon, finishing second behind only reigning world champion Max Verstappen after race leader Charles Leclerc crucially crashed out with a costly spin into the barriers on lap 18.

George Russell beat Red Bull’s Sergio Perez to third spot during a feisty and absorbing late clash between the pair, marking the very first time that Mercedes’ two British drivers have appeared on the podium together following a difficult campaign for the Silver Arrows.

The exertions of a hard-fought contest in the intense summer heat of southern France were clearly visible afterwards, with an exhausted Hamilton seen lying on the floor in the cooldown room.

He then revealed that his drinks bottle did not work at all during the course of the 52 laps, leading to what he estimated to be weight loss of around 3kg in the searing temperatures of the cockpit of his W13.

“I feel fantastic, just a little dehydrated,” Hamilton said in his post-race interview. “The drinks bottle didn’t work in the race – I don’t actually ever really drink in the race so it’s the first time I’d actually tried it all year but nothing came out. What a day, what a weekend.

“I’m just so proud of the team, it’s an incredible result. Winning races and getting results look this is about the whole package. We know we don’t have the pace of the teams ahead but reliability is a huge fundamental part of the process.”

He added: “I didn’t see my weight just now, but I would imagine probably around three kilos [lost]. So, yeah, it’s enough. I’m looking forward to downing the rest of this drink.”

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