Lewis Hamilton was presented with a Michael Schumacher Formula 1 race helmet, equaling his record of 91 Grand Prix victories at N நூrburgring on Sunday.
Hamilton qualified for second place and Mercedes teammate Valteri Botas recovered from the Eiffel Grand Prix victory and took the lead shortly before the first round pit stop.
The late safety car gave Red Bull’s Max Verstappen a chance to try Hamilton, but the Mercedes driver never saw the risk of losing the race, recording his seventh win of the season.
As a result, after the final victory at the 2006 Chinese Grand Prix, Hamilton saw a draw on Schumacher’s 91 racing victories.
To mark the occasion, Schumacher’s son, Formula 2 driver Mick Schumacher, presented Hamilton with his 2012 Mercedes F1 race helmet.
“I was honored and I don’t even know what to say,” Hamilton said.
“When you grow up looking at someone, you usually adore them, actually depending on the quality of the driver they are on, but what they can do consistently year after year, betting on the race and with their team week after week.
“When I saw his dominance for so long, I didn’t think of anyone, especially myself, and based on the records I never thought I would be anywhere near Michael.
“So it’s an incredible honor. It takes a while to get used to.”
Hamilton had consistently batted questions about the importance of the record until the weekend, and admitted that he only realized that he fit in with Schumacher when he entered the pit alley and saw the light hoarding.
“Honestly, when I got into the pit alley, I felt equal.” Hamilton said.
“I didn’t count on it once I passed, so I couldn’t do without this incredible team.
“Everyone, constantly pushed behind me and gave me everything for it. So a huge thank you and a lot of respect.”
Hamilton got off to a good start and went from wheel to wheel with the Botswana in the first corner, with the Mercedes drivers running wide before both Mercedes drivers cut into Turn 2.
“We had a good start and went up with Voltaire, we both understood in the first corner, so I obviously tried to give him as much space as possible,” Hamilton explained.
“Then he was in my blind spot, so I didn’t know where he was. I moved wide outside, he came back, he did an amazing job.
“Coming out of that corner I remember, ‘You’re good, I’m impressed, it’s good.'”
Hamilton took the lead at 13 in the lap when Bodas was locked in Damon 1 and ran wide, and will remain the field leader until the end of the race.
“I had to make sure I tried to hang him as much as possible,” Hamilton said.
“I took good care of my tires, where I could see him graining his front tire, so I knew it was time for me to push on the next two laps, and then he locked up.
“But it’s not an easy race. The Red Bulls are very fast. Max drove very well. I think he had a place and opportunity in the restart, but I was able to pull away and pull a good break.
“But you can finally see their speed. We’ve got a fierce fight on our hands.”