Lewis Hamilton said he felt “destroyed” and just “happy to be alive” after finishing third at the season ending Abu Dhabi GP, behind race winner Max verstappen and Valtteri.

Hamilton said after qualifying on Saturday that he was “not the usual me” and still had “some feeling within my lungs” after his battle with covid 19.

“I’m destroyed. I do not feel good,” “But I’m happy, I’m grateful. I’m alive, and I live to fight another day.

“I still managed to finish off the season with a podium so I’m thankful to the team that I was able to contribute.”

Hamilton added: “Considering the past couple of weeks I’ve had I really am generally happy with the weekend. That was a really hard race for me physically. All the year physically I’ve been fine but today I definitely wasn’t.

“I don’t think I have ever been so blown. I am just glad it is over. My body is not feeling great but I have to look on the bright side. I made it through, and I didn’t think at any period last week that I would be here.

“I am really just truly grateful for my health, to be alive, and looking forward to recovering over the period we are off, and then getting my body back to where I know it should be.”

He also said: “covid is no joke.”

“I never, ever thought it was from the get go this year, and I knew at some stage if I got it it would be tough because there are people out there losing their lives so I know it’s serious.

“I always found it very strange when you saw world leaders laughing it off like it’s nothing.

” I’m so grateful I was able to come here this weekend, I knew I wouldn’t physically be where I’d been the whole rest of the season but I made it, so when there’s a will there’s a way.”

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