Lewis Hamilton may be taking the Formula One world - and the British media - by storm but, despite the swathes of coverage his stellar Formula One debut has garnered, he has found one man hard to beat.

Fernando Alonso was easy compared to the opposition being put up by former England football captain David Beckham, whose recall to the national side provided one of the few sports stories to keep the Hamilton name off people's lips.

While the McLaren star was taking his first and second grands prix victories, Beckham's reinstatement in the England side - and Real Madrid's first league title in four years - kept the seasoned tabloid favourite narrowly ahead of his new rival in the media coverage stakes.

According to Sports Marketing Surveys' new Mediatrak service, which constantly monitors over 150 global TV and radio stations, Beckham was still the main man when it came to coverage. The service measured the pick up each received on the main UK news and sports channels over a three-week period between 1-17 June - which included Hamilton's successful Canadian and US GP appearances and Beckham playing his final game for Real Madrid - with the older star continuing to shine brighter, although only just.

Since then, Hamilton has been in action at the Goodwood Festival of Speed and, despite near-Biblical rain all day Sunday, received an immense welcome as he entertained a wildly partisan crowd with his first public appearance behind the wheel of a McLaren F1 car on British soil.

With the British Grand Prix in less than a fortnight and Beckham already packing his bags for life in the North American football wilderness, the media figures for early July may be vastly different.



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