Hamilton aims to inspire fans
Lewis Hamilton is aware British eyes are on him to provide some relief in what has so far been a disappointing summer of sport.
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Andy Murray's exit from Wimbledon this week was the latest cruel blow for British fans who had likely been fuelled with high hopes of glory come the start of the warmer months.
But in recent weeks England have lost in rugby union to New Zealand, cricket to Sri Lanka, whilst obviously there was the demise of Roy Hodgson's troops in the World Cup.
It means many sports fans will now be looking to Hamilton in this weekend's British Grand Prix at Silverstone to lift the country out of the sporting doldrums.
Certainly Hamilton starts favourite to land his first success since 2008 at the venerable venue, despite a poor run of three races which has seen him fall 29 points behind Mercedes team-mate Nico Rosberg in the battle for the Formula One crown.
Looking ahead to the event, Hamilton, sporting a Mercedes cap with the Union Jack on the underside of the peak, said: "It's always a special weekend for us British drivers.
"Coming here, seeing the fans, having already been at Goodwood (for the Festival of Speed) and seeing how many people were there and the support coming into this weekend, it's very exciting for us, and the feeling of being at home is really a great one.
"The support, as I say, for me and Jenson (Button) and the guys here, it's unlike any other place we experience, so I'm really excited to see everyone and I hope we can put on a good show."
But appreciating the pressure on his shoulders this weekend from a highly-expectant public, Hamilton added: "We are going to do our utmost to try to represent and perform for the country.
"You never know how the weekend's going to go, you never know how people have developed, improved.
"But of course, with Mercedes as a leading team, hopefully we'll have a good shot this weekend.
"I'll do everything I can to bring at least a little bit of joy and add to the great success that some of the top athletes have."
Following a run of four successive victories to take a three-point lead in the championship over Rosberg heading into Monaco, the 29-year-old German has since stolen the momentum from the Briton.
Hamilton finished runner-up to Rosberg around the streets of the principality and in Austria most recently where mistakes in qualifying cost him dear.
Those results were sandwiched either side of a retirement in Canada where Rosberg was second himself to Red Bull's Daniel Ricciardo.
Hamilton, struggling with hayfever as he sniffled his way through his pre-race press briefings, is aware of his need for a result on home soil, adding: "As every race, it's important to be out ahead.
"I had the advantage for a few races and now Nico's had that for at least the last couple.
"But now this is the British Grand Prix. I'm going to do everything I can to be out in front.
"When it's your home grand prix it's one of the greatest experiences you can ever have as a sportsman and as a driver, so that's what I'm working towards this weekend."