13 MARCH 2008

Formula One ace Lewis Hamilton proved his sporting skills extend beyond the race track as he won a friendly kayaking competition in Melbourne this week.

Paddling against new McLaren team mate Heikki Kovalainen and other local celebrities prior to this Sunday's Australian Grand Prix, the 23-year-old steered his kayak through the surf like a pro.

And his dedication paid off in the end. Beaming with pride, he leapt out of his boat as he arrived on shore and powered toward the finish to claim victory.

It also wasn't the only memorable moment for Lewis that day. The sports sensation took time out to meet rock legends Kiss, who are set to perform after this Sunday's race. "No way we'd miss this!" enthused guitarist Paul Stanley. "We'll be firing on all cylinders (this weekend) and the audience will need their seatbelts."

Photo: © Alphapress.com
Although Lewis is more accustomed to driving a Formula One car round treacherous Grand Prix circuits, in Melbourne this week he proved he's more than capable of handling other forms of transport Photo: © Getty Images
Photo: © Alphapress.com
The racing sensation leaps out of his kayak to power towards the finish line on the beachPhoto: © Getty Images
Photo: © Alphapress.com
On the same day, Lewis also met up with rock legends Kiss, who are scheduled to perform at this Sunday's Australian Grand Prix Photo: © Rex