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Racing mad teen with heart condition meets Lewis Hamilton
A TEENAGER with a life-limiting heart condition met his Formula 1 heroes at the British Grand Prix.
Samuel Cheetham met almost all the drivers including Lewis Hamilton and Jenson Button and had a tour of the pit lane.
The 14-year-old from Ringwood has Idiopathic Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension, which makes it difficult for his heart to pump blood through his lungs, and puts him at risk of heart failure.
He is treated by London’s Great Ormond Street Hospital and the racing mad Ferndown Upper pupil was a special guest of Formula 1 boss Bernie Ecclestone.
Samuel said: “It was an amazing day. Jenson was a lot taller in real life and Lewis was way shorter!
“We got to watch all of practice and all of qualifying from the pits, from Copse and the Wellington Straight.
“The cars were phenomenal, especially the noise.”
Samuel has intravenous medication delivered 24-hours a day through a pump in a rucksack.
He said: “There was a lot of walking on the day but I was fine.”
Dad Tim, 52, who works in property maintenance, applied for the treat after seeing a poster in a waiting room at Great Ormond street.
The family drove up in a motor home and mum Karen, 50, said: “The day was on two levels, really.
“First of all because he was so interested in Formula 1, he was excited like any 11-year-old boy would be.
“But there were also mixed emotions because 10 years ago, when he was first diagnosed, from what they said, he shouldn’t be here, basically.
“To see him at something like that was a really special moment.”