Niki Lauda would have tipped his red cap on that result from wherever he was watching.
Lewis Hamilton has perhaps won 76 races before, but few are special than his 77th – at the Monaco Grand Prix on Sunday night, five days after the death of F1 legend and hero Lauda.
There could not have been a more fitting result for the figurehead of the Formula 1 calendar than a victory for the Mercedes driver. The three-time world champion and non-executive chairman of Mercedes, Lauda, has been instrumental in getting Hamilton to the Silver Arrows, where he has won four titles since 2014 and is on the right track in 2019.
For Hamilton, Lauda was not only his boss, but also his mentor and above all his friend. The Austrian died on Tuesday at the age of 70 – eight months after a lung transplant.
This victory was very much in his honor.
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"I really fought the spirit of Niki," Hamilton said after the race. "I know that he would look down and he would take off his hat today.
"I tried to keep my focus and make him proud … we really miss him."
Hamilton took his second pole position in Monaco on Saturday and turned it into his fourth win of the year in a thrilling race unlike many others in the Principality.
An early safety car, a variety of tire choices, a five-second penalty for Max Verstappen and the threat of rain left nobody guessing who would win for much of the race.
Apart from the Verstappen penalty (more on that later), all of these variables have turned out to be on the wrong side for Hamilton.
He ran with a more fragile tire to those behind him while the race remained dry despite some crashes. This prevented cars from coming in for wet tires, which provided him with a rescue, since his slick tires were in far worse shape than Verstappen stuck to his rear.
"You have to hope for a miracle," Hamilton said to his pit wall with 19 laps remaining and his tires on the verge of oblivion.
Then Verstappen attacked the Mercedes driver in the last seven laps unrestricted and even contacted him with three remaining laps.
And yet Hamilton has won.
With his silky right foot, Hamilton milked each lap of his medium-weight tires and passed more than 50 laps at each exit to keep Verstappen in check.
It was an emotional victory – his first in Monaco since 2016.
"That's for Niki," said the Mercedes pit wall Hamilton.
"That was an incredible ride. There was no one who could have done that, "added Mercedes James Vowles.
Sebastian Vettel crossed the finish line in third, but was lifted after Verstappens five-second penalty to second place.
Stewards beat him with the sanction after being unsure of being released from the pits and heading for Mercedes Valtteri Bottas, who finished third.
In the drivers' standings Hamilton is now 17 points ahead of Bottas.
Daniel Ricciardo had more reasons to complain about his season after a bad strategy cost him the top five.
He started in sixth and jumped into fifth place in the Safety Car in the first lap. Renault caught up with him promptly – usually a good strategy under the safety car – but it cost him several places and left him more time in midfield.
Ricciardo retired in the final stages of the race to save ninth place.
1 Lewis Hamilton MERCEDES 1: 43: 28,43
2 Sebastian Vettel FERRARI + 2.602s
3 Valtteri Botta's MERCEDES + 3,162s
4 Max Verstappen RED BULL RACING HONDA + 5.537s
5 Pierre Gasly RED BULL RACING HONDA + 9,946s
6 Carlos Sainz MCLAREN RENAULT + 53.454s
7 Daniil Kvyat SCUDERIA TORO ROSSO HONDA + 54.574s
8 Alexander Albon SCUDERIA TORO ROSSO HONDA + 55,200s
9 Daniel Ricciardo RENAULT + 60.894s
10 Romain Grosjean HAAS FERRARI + 61.034s
11 Lando Norris MCLAREN RENAULT + 66.801s
12 Kevin Magnussen HAAS FERRARI +1 lap
13 Sergio Perez RACE POINT BWT MERCEDES +1 lap
14 Nico Hülkenberg RENAULT +1 lap
15 George Russell WILLIAMS MERCEDES +1 lap
16 Lance Stroll RACING POINT BWT MERCEDES 77 +1 Round
17 Kimi Raikkonen ALFA ROMEO RACING FERRARI +1 lap
18 Robert Kubica WILLIAMS MERCEDES +1 lap
19 Antonio Giovinazzi ALFA ROMEO RACING FERRARI +2 laps
NC Charles Leclerc FERRARI DNF
(tagsToTranslate) Europe (t) KAYO SPORTS (t) Monaco (t) Niki Lauda (t) Sebastian Vettel (t) Western Europe (t) World Cup (t) Defending champion (t) dramatic pole position (t) emotional win (t) suspension in the first row (t) best result in the season (t) qualifying result in the season (t) senior staff member (t)