British racing driver Lewis Hamilton has received a knighthood during an investiture ceremony at Windsor Castle.
Sir Lewis was awarded the honour on Wednesday by Prince Charles for his services to motorsport over a glittering two-decade career.
He was joined by his mother Carmen Lockhart and was all smiles as they posed for pictures in the castle’s quadrangle.
When congratulated on his award, Hamilton said: “Thank you.”
It comes days after Hamilton, 36, narrowly missed out on a record eighth Formula One world title to his rival, Red Bull driver Max Verstappen.
The nail-biting championship was clinched during the controversial final lap of the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.
The introduction of the safety car after a late crash at the Yas Marina Circuit wiped out Hamilton's lead and gave Verstappen he advantage as he was using fresher tyres.
Hamilton was included in the New Year Honours list in 2020 after pressure on UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson to approve the accolade.
Despite being one of the UK’s most successful sportsmen, Hamilton has previously been overlooked for a knighthood, reportedly due to his tax affairs.
His knighthood was included on the Diplomatic and Overseas List as he now lives in Monaco and has not resided permanently in the UK since 2007.
Former Labour cabinet minister Lord Hain twice wrote to No 10 Downing Street calling for the driver to be honoured with a CBE.
The past few years have been pivotal for Hamilton, who found his public voice and was praised when he spoke out over race issues, including the death of George Floyd.
The sole black driver in F1’s white-dominated world called out his peers for staying silent over Floyd’s murder by an American policeman in Minneapolis.
He then marched on the streets of London supporting the Black Lives Matter movement and praised protesters for tearing down the statue of Edward Colston in Bristol.
Abu Dhabi Grand Prix - in pictures
Veteran British actor David Suchet was due to be knighted for his drama career and charity work but announced he had tested positive for Covid-19.
Barry Hearn, the chairman of the World Snooker Tour and the Professional Darts Corporation, was awarded an OBE for services to sport.
The former manager of six-time snooker world champion Steve Davis is also the chairman of Matchroom Sport, a company which owns, produces and promotes 12 sports.
Singer and rapper Craig David received an MBE for services to music after staging a career comeback.
The star found overnight fame with the release of his debut album Born To Do It in 2000 but the hits dried up and he moved to the US.
David returned to successful ways with his album Following My Intuition in 2016.