Pierre Gasly has praised Lewis Hamilton’s impact on younger Formula 1 drivers, believing he has paved the way to normalise personal expressions.
Hamilton is the most successful driver in F1 history with 103 Grand Prix wins and seven World Championships.
However, the 38-year-old has pushed to ensure his impact is also felt away from the race track.
In recent years, Hamilton has been an advocate for equality and has spoken out on increasing diversity in F1.
His personality has also been evident through his fashion as he is often pictured arriving at the track dressed in a unique way, while other drivers will simply adopt team gear.
The Briton recently signed an extension with Mercedes and will remain with the squad until at least the end of 2025.
Gasly, who joined Alpine this year, has stated that Hamilton has been an inspirational figure for younger drivers in F1.
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"It’s important to say that without him, things would be different these days," Gasly told Sky Sports F1.
"I think Lewis opened a lot of doors for all of us.
"The mentality has changed slightly, especially if you look to other sports, NBA in the States it’s very different I think people have a lot more space to express themselves.
"Actually I get on very well with Lewis, I often thank him for sticking to his values and to himself all these years because now it’s definitely made the path slightly smoother for us young drivers."