Lewis Hamilton has defended his extensive use of social media in the wake of fresh criticism over his celebrity lifestyle.

The Mercedes driver came under fire ahead of the Australian Grand Prix after he posted a video on Snapchat that showed him filming himself while riding a motorbike in Auckland, New Zealand. Local police investigated the incident but eventually elected to take no further action against Hamilton after citing a lack of evidence.

The triple world champion is very active across his social media channels, keeping his fans up to date on his latest whereabouts and activities. Hamilton actually wishes he could do as much when he is at a circuit.

“I like social media and I’ve got a great following,” the 31-year-old is quoted as saying by The Daily Mail’s website.

“I’ve got some incredible fans that follow me from all over the world and come to the races, but what they don’t get to see from a picture you take with video, you can now show the stuff you’re doing instantly.

“Unfortunately, F1 has blocked us from being able to film in the paddock… The amount of complaints I’ve had from all my snaps, it’s been on and on and on, [and] now you are not allowed to [film]. But you are allowed to take stills, so I don’t know what the real difference is.”

Hamilton’s jet-set lifestyle has been a polarising topic of late, with some blaming the Briton’s hectic social schedule for his slight dip in performance at the end of last season. Others, most notably F1 commercial rights boss Bernie Ecclestone, think Hamilton’s behaviour makes it a great ambassador to promote the sport.

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