F1 cameraman comes to Lewis Hamilton’s rescue in unusual incident

F1 preview: A lap of the Azerbaijan Grand Prix

Lewis Hamilton was spotted frantically asking a cameraman for help moments before sprint qualifying at the Azerbaijan Grand Prix. The Mercedes star waved down the cameraman while waiting at the end of the pitlane for the second sprint qualifying session to begin.

The individual initially looked confused but ran over to the side of Hamilton’s Silver Arrows car as the driver pointed to a tear-off visor strip that had got stuck to the chassis. After recovering the debris, Hamilton gave him a thumbs up in acknowledgement.

Former Aston Martin strategist Bernie Collins told Sky Sports the move was “interesting from Lewis”. Ex-F1 star Karun Chandhok shared more details on the incident as he laughed with commentators at the bizarre stunt.

He explained: “It was a tear-off. He took a tear-off and he got one of the cameramen. Jean Michel Tibi, the cameraman in the pitlane, to come and take it off.”

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Sean Kelly, a statistician who works with F1 at race events, confirmed Tibi was the cameraman at the heart of the incident. He also admitted Tibi was close to everyone in the paddock and even a friend of Hamilton’s.

He posted on Twitter: “Jean-Michel Tibi, the cameraman that just collected Lewis Hamilton’s tearoff, knows EVERYBODY in F1. Literally friends with everyone, from Hamilton down to me. What a legend.”

Hamilton suffered a difficult Saturday morning with a lap only quick enough for P6 on the grid for the sprint. Team-mate George Russell secured P4 despite lacking pace to his team-mate throughout the weekend.

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After the chequered flag, Hamilton appeared to point the blame at Red Bull for his struggles in the final shootout. He explained: “The sessions were going really well. Q1 and Q2 went well but I struggled with the rear on the last lap and I didn’t get a tow from the Red Bulls.

“It was fun. Qualifying is always fun so it felt like another qualifying session. It’s only 17 laps so there’s not a massive amount we can do in that time but hopefully we can get a race.”

Hamilton will line up P5 for Sunday’s Grand Prix with Russell in P11 based on the results of Friday’s longer qualifying session.

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