Lewis Hamilton is without doubt one of the greatest Formula One drivers of all time.
He often divides opinions between fans of the sport, but most can agree that he’s one of the greats.
Currently, he holds the joint record with Michael Schumacher for World Drivers’ Championship titles (7). He also holds the current records for most wins, most pole positions and most podium finishes.
Hamilton joined the McLaren young driver program in 1998, but his ‘rookie’ season in Formula One came in 2007 as one of McLaren’s drivers.
He set a number of records during his first season where he eventually finished runner-up to Kimi Räikkönen in the drivers’ championship by one point – In 2008, the next season, he went on to win his first world title, becoming the then-youngest Formula One World Champion in history.
Lewis Hamilton signed with Mercedes in 2013, where he has won a further 6 drivers’ championship titles.
F1 sports cards are rising in popularity, as the sport has benefitted from higher interest and popularity in recent seasons, and Hamilton’s cards are naturally in high demand among card collectors.
Hamilton has some of the rarest and most valuable F1 cards, so let’s take a look at some to look out for.
What Is Lewis Hamilton’s True Rookie Card?
2006 Futera Grand Prix Lewis Hamilton #95
Lewis Hamilton’s true rookie card is the 2006 Futera Grand Prix card, which features a young Lewis in Formula Two, the year before his Formula One McLaren debut.
The card itself isn’t considered a ‘mainstream’ release, but it is Hamilton’s first issued card, and it’s one of the most sought after rare F1 cards.
It’s very hard to come across, which adds to it’s already high value. I believe only 40 were printed and released, so getting hold of one of them will cost a collector a lot of money.
Other Valuable Lewis Hamilton Cards To Look Out For
2009 Top Trumps Tournament Sporting Heroes Lewis Hamilton
Another Hamilton card that isn’t considered a ‘mainstream’ release. The 2009 Lewis Hamilton card from the Sporting Heroes Top Trumps set is also hard to come across.
Top Trumps is primarily a game, popular mainly in the UK, where the aim is to compare the stats and attributes on a card to try to trump and win an opponent’s card, until you have the full set – Certain Top Trump cards have become more collectible in recent years, such as Hamilton’s card (as it’s one of his earliest releases), but the fact a lot of them were used to play the game, as primarily intended at the time, it’s hard to find them in top condition.
Hamilton’s card shows a picture of him celebrating and includes the number of world titles he had won at the time, which was one. The card also includes a description, which mentions his record of being the then youngest ever Formula One world champion.
2009 Sports Illustrated For Kids Lewis Hamilton #360
The 2009 Sports Illustrated for Kids Lewis Hamilton card shows him in his earlier F1 days, driving a McLaren car and is also a hard card to come by for collectors.
It was released on a perforated sheet along with 8 other sports stars – which means the standalone card will have ragged edges, where they’ve been removed from the perforated sheet, which obviously affects its condition.
2020 Lewis Hamilton Topps Now #3
Topps acquired the F1 license in 2020 and released a Hamilton card in their Topps Now series, which are usually cards that feature a memorable or big sporting moment.
This particular card was released after Lewis’ Tuscan Grand Prix win. The Topps Now cards are print-to-order – meaning collectors have a week to submit an order for the card, and the print run is done based on how many were ordered. For this card, the print run was 1,915, making it quite rare.
It’s a popular F1 card, with some collectors considering it his rookie, so it’s valuable if you can get hold of one.
2020 Topps Chrome Formula 1 Lewis Hamilton #1
The cards in the Topps Chrome Formula 1 set, released in April 2021, are considered by many as Hamilton’s first ‘mainstream’ card releases.
By then, Hamilton was already established as one of the greatest Formula One drivers of all time, so it’s no surprise that he was featured on 17 different base cards out of the 200 in total within the set.
This card, #1 in the set, is the most popular among collectors and holds a lot of value.
There’s also premium edition versions of the base card, such as the 2020 Topps Chrome Formula 1 Sapphire Edition card (pictured on the right of the two cards above) – The card follows the same primary image, but with the more premium background design. There are several parallel options.
2020 Topps Chrome Formula 1 Lewis Hamilton #F1A-LH Autograph (/58)
Lewis has an autograph version of the Topps Chrome #1 card, limited to just 58 copies, making it very hard to acquire for collectors, but also making it one of his most valuable cards.
2020 Topps Chrome Formula 1 Variation Lewis Hamilton #1
A more limited variation of the 2020 Topps Chrome F1 Hamilton card is also popular among collectors, but again, is hard to get hold of, due to its scarcity.
The leading image is different from the base card, and shows Hamilton sitting. This also has even more limited parallels, like the Sapphire Edition one pictured above.
Is A Lewis Hamilton Rookie Card A Good Investment?
F1 cards are steadily growing in popularity, and the overall market has risen in recent years. As far as investments in rare F1 cards go, Lewis Hamilton is a safe bet, along with the likes of Max Verstappen, and there’s no question his records and career achievements make him one of the all-time greats of the sport, and his card popularity among collectors will hold in years to come.