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Playing video games anonymously as a celebrity must be pretty liberating, but can also lead to some very funny moments. Lewis Hamilton, seven-time Formula 1 World Champion and one of the greatest racing drivers of all time, stepped into the online-modes of Gran Turismo over the holidays for some relaxed competition, which seems to be a bit of a tradition for him.

When he went online, “there was someone with my initials, like LR or Lewis, Lewis GB or something like that, or something 44”, Hamilton explained at an event held by the Mercedes F1 Team, where he appeared on stage with his team mate, George Russell, who sometimes streams himself playing racing simulations or Call of Duty on Twitch.

Though Hamilton is a passionate gamer, even going so far as to gift his younger brother a portable gaming rig so they could play Call of Duty together when they are traveling, he could not hold his own against his admirer: “He kept taking me out. He had no idea he was racing me.”

A cheeky Russell then budged in, saying: “You’ve found me!” With how many F1 drivers do play games in their free time, it’s not impossible that Hamilton actually faced one of his colleagues online. In this case, though, Russell was probably just kidding – or already starting the psychological warfare against his team mate ahead of the 2023 season.

You can also catch the reigning F1 World Champion, Max Verstappen, compete in the virtual 24 Hours of Le Mans this weekend, if you need something to get you through the F1 off-season.