Veteran World Rally Champion Sebastien Ogier says Lewis Hamilton was "robbed" of an eighth F1 Drivers' Championship at the 2021 title showdown in Abu Dhabi.
Ogier, who finished second at the 2022 WRC season opener in Monte Carlo last weekend, was speaking on RMC's Super Moscato Show when he was asked about the ongoing situation with Hamilton, as the Briton continues to maintain a low profile after his title defeat to Max Verstappen.
"I think he will come back," Ogier predicted. "He is in an ultra-competitive environment, with the best team of the moment. [But] it must have been very difficult for him."
"Let's not be afraid to say Hamilton was robbed"
Ogier added that the circumstances of the loss, coming about due to Race Director Michael Masi's handling of the Safety Car withdrawal, made it clear that Hamilton's title defeat wasn't entirely fair.
"He really felt like he was robbed," he said. "He was robbed, let's not be afraid to say that.
"Although I have a lot of respect for Max Verstappen, he had a great season, but on the last weekend…"
Not holding back, Ogier reckons Hamilton's dominance of the Abu Dhabi race until the Safety Car intervention had made him the rightful champion.
"Lewis dominated the race; he was in front until the end," he commented.
"Unfortunately for him, a few laps from the finish, there was this famous Safety Car.
"Either one of them was a great champion but, on the face of that weekend, it was a steal. It's hard to swallow for Hamilton."
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