Lewis Hamilton won the Spanish Grand Prix on four separate occasions, but did he manage to get a grasp of the Spanish language along the way?
Lewis Hamilton doesn’t speak Spanish or any other language apart from English. He tried to learn a couple of basic phrases in one of his interviews, but there’s no evidence that he continued learning Spanish afterward.
Stick around to watch Hamilton trying to learn Spanish, and discover more about his Grand Prix victories in Spain and Mexico.
Trying to Learn Spanish
There’s no evidence that Lewis Hamilton ever tried to learn Spanish in his spare time, but at least he attempted to do it on camera. During an interview with the Spanish TV channel Antena 3, the British racer tried to expand his horizons by learning some basic Spanish words and phrases.
The reporter taught Hamilton how to say his name, ask for a beer, and tell people that he likes Spain very much. He patiently repeated each of the phrases, and his accent wasn’t that bad, but it’s unclear if he memorized any of them for later.
Hamilton’s attempts to speak Spanish weren’t always so well-received. Back in November 2018, he scored his second victory at the Brazilian Grand Prix, and decided to thank fans in this country for supporting him by speaking their language… or so he thought.
Despite his best intentions, Hamilton made one major mistake – he posted his message in Spanish, not in Portuguese. This was another failed attempt to please his fans, but they were quick to call him out and explain that Spanish isn’t the official language in Brazil.
Victories in Spain
Lewis Hamilton never fully mastered Spanish, so he had to do all his talking on the track. He won the Spanish Grand Prix on four separate occasions, starting with 2014.
His track record at this event hasn’t always been spotless, and 2016 marked one of the biggest failures of his career. After years of animosity between Hamilton and his Mercedes teammate Nico Rosberg, they had a dramatic on-track collision that cost them the victory.
Their feud was finally over after Rosberg retired later that year, and Hamilton wasn’t involved in any more incidents in Spain. He won the Spanish Grand Prix for three consecutive years, starting with 2017, and is currently chasing Michael Schumacher’s record at this race.
Hamilton also scored two Grand Prix victories in another Spanish-speaking country – Mexico. The Mexican Grand Prix wasn’t held between 1993 and 2014, but it eventually returned to the Formula One calendar in 2015, when Hamilton finished second.
He had more luck at the Autódromo Hermanos Rodríguez circuit in 2016 and 2019, when he described the Mexican Grand Prix as “a very, very hard race to win”.
What About German?
Lewis Hamilton doesn’t speak Spanish, but learning some other languages may be in the cards for the Formula One superstar. It’s been reported that he’s trying to learn French and considering learning some German so he could “communicate better with [his] bosses” at Mercedes.
His former rival Nico Rosberg even jokingly offered him German lessons following his retirement in 2016. While attending Mercedes’ end of season event in Stuttgart, Hamilton told the audience, “I have been with the Mercedes family since the age of 13 and I hope by the time it comes to my retirement that I can speak German to you.”
Rosberg told Hamilton to call him up if he needs a German teacher because he’s looking for a job. The British racer then described him as “the worst German teacher” because he always tells him all the wrong words, so it’s highly unlikely they became study buddies after that.
Hamilton may not have a knack for learning different languages, but his former Mercedes teammate certainly does. In addition to English and German, Rosberg also speaks French, Italian, and Spanish, so he probably wouldn’t be such a bad teacher after all.