Hamilton surprised to beat Vettel's Top Gear time

© F1 Pulse, 19 February 2013
© Mercedes

Lewis Hamilton may not have got the better of Sebastian Vettel in Formula 1 just yet but the Briton pushed the Red Bull driver off the top of the time sheets on Top Gear.

The Mercedes star returned to the British motoring show aired on Sunday, after his first appearance in 2008, to take on Vettel’s time which was the fastest among the Formula 1 drivers who had appeared on the ‘Star in a Reasonably Priced Car’ segment.

On the previous occasion that the 28-year-old had set foot on the circuit, it was wet and consequently had left Hamilton unhappy with the time he had set.

When asked whether Vettel’s fastest time irritated him, Hamilton smiled, “Um hmm.”

“He’s had the best car (in F1) for God-knows-how-many-years and he’s also the quickest on Top Gear,” reasoned the Mercedes driver.

Hamilton set a time of 1 minute 42.9 seconds, pipping the triple F1 world champion by 1.1 seconds.

“Wow! Holy Crap! I’m really surprised,” Hamilton said.

Several F1 drivers have taken part in the show and the included Rubens Barrichello, who held the top time from The Stig, until Vettel passed the Brazilian’s marker in July 2011.

“I remember when Rubens came in and did the time, we went to drivers’ briefing in Germany and he bought everyone a shirt,” recalled Hamilton. “And he gave himself ‘I beat The Stig’ and everyone else ‘The Stig beat me.’”

Driver Time
Lewis Hamilton 1m 42.9s
Sebastian Vettel 1m 44.0s
Rubens Barrichello 1m 44.3s
The Stig (II) 1m 44.4s
Nigel Mansell 1m 44.6s
Lewis Hamilton 1m 44.7s (w)
Jenson Button 1m 44.7s (w)
The Stig (I) 1m 46.1s
Damon Hill 1m 46.3s
Mark Webber 1m 47.1s (w)

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