It’s an image almost impossible for the mind to conjure up – Formula One world champion Lewis Hamilton plucked from the high tech glamour at the pinnacle of motor sport and dropped into the brash and noisy world of American stock car racing instead.
But like many an open wheel racer before him, including his McLaren predecessor Juan Pablo Montoya, Hamilton admits to being curious to try out the radically different machinery used on the NASCAR ovals.
Answering questions from readers of the Sun newspaper, he listed several racing machines he’d like to test: “I’d love to try a MotoGP bike but not particularly race one. I would love to try one of Malcolm Wilson’s rally cars – and one day I might try a NASCAR,” he said.
But he said nothing about actually competing in stock cars – and also ruled out a bid to win the Indianapolis 500, saying an assault on the Borg-Warner Trophy would need more commitment than he was able to give.
“To do the Indy 500 you have to be going at it. It would be unreasonable for me to expect to get in the car and go and win it,” he said. “You have to have a good season in that kind of thing so I don’t have any particular desire to do that.”
One place he would happily race, though, is the 24 Hours of Le Mans: “If Mercedes-Benz want to go to Le Mans one day and take me, I’ll do that.”