LEWIS Hamilton secured his fourth world championship on Monday when he finished ninth in the Mexico Grand Prix.
His greatness was not in dispute before securing another driver's title but after locking in another crown, the question has been asked: 'where does Hamilton sit among the sport's all-time greats?'
Former world champion Damon Hill on Monday hailed Hamilton as "one of the greatest" drivers, fellow Brits Jenson Button and Jackie Stewart also lavished praise on Mercedes' no.1 man while another legend of the sport - Mercedes' non-executive chairman Niki Lauda - went a step further.
"Lewis has driven like a god this season," Lauda said.
"He has proved he is the best on the grid and deserves his success.
"He is possibly the best ever - he is certainly up there with the best we've ever seen."
Hill was equally effusive with his praise.
"Lewis Hamilton is certainly one of the greatest, most talented drivers ever to compete in Formula One," Hill wrote in Britain's Times newspaper.
"(When considering the best) I would look to the multiple world champions, certainly the triple world champions ... but certainly the likes of Juan Manuel Fangio, Michael Schumacher, Ayrton Senna and Alain Prost.
"Those are the names that spring to my mind."
Former teammate Button said there was still plenty ahead for Hamilton.
"Michael (Schumacher) is still the greatest when you look at the outright results, but if Lewis stays and if Mercedes stay as competitive, you could see him getting close to winning seven," he said.
Jackie Stewart agreed.
"I think the best is yet to come from Lewis.
"For me, the halcyon years for a driver are in your mid-thirties. You have maturity, you still have strength and you are still learning.
"But you have collected a lot of knowledge and you are still vibrant and hungry."
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