Champion Hamilton wrestles with Mexican culture

Thu Oct 29, 2015 12:34am EDT
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By Alan Baldwin

MEXICO CITY (Reuters) - Lewis Hamilton still has to pinch himself to believe he is a three times Formula One world champion and a surreal afternoon in Mexico will give him further cause to question reality.

The Briton, who wrapped up his third title in Austin on Sunday, was serenaded by a Mariachi band, played table football in a wrestling ring with a masked fighter and was handed a beaded skull as a gift on Wednesday.

"Every day I am waking up and I’m like, 'I can’t believe it. I’m a three times world champion,'" the Mercedes driver told reporters after an event organized by team sponsor Puma for employees.

"I don’t know when it’s going to kick in but I’m definitely enjoying it," continued Hamilton, who earned his 10th victory of the season in Texas.

"When people tell me three, I have them repeat it because it sounds really cool."

The afternoon's activities gave him plenty more opportunities to think he was still dreaming.

He had arrived at the Arena Mexico, the venerable home of Lucha Libre wrestling and boxing venue for the 1968 Olympics, to be serenaded on stage to the strains of 'Cielito Lindo'.

Handed an oversized sombrero, which he declined to wear, the champion was then invited to play table football inside the ring against the renowned 'Mistico', a masked 'luchador' in a shimmering cape.   Continued...

Mercedes Formula One driver Lewis Hamilton of Britain (L) performs with Mexican wrestlers at the Coliseo Arena during a promotional event in Mexico City, October 28, 2015. REUTERS/Henry Romero