Despite losing a possible eighth World Championship in contentious circumstances in Abu Dhabi last December, Lewis Hamilton is still statistically the most successful driver in F1 history by a considerable margin. RacingNews365.com takes a closer look at the ridiculous statistics behind Hamilton’s F1 career.
Most career wins
Lewis Hamilton’s form and Mercedes’ dominance since 2014 meant the Briton was long expected to surpass Michael Schumacher’s record of 91 race wins, and he duly did so at the 2020 Portuguese Grand Prix.
Another 12 wins by the end of the 2021 season means Hamilton currently sits on 103 Grand Prix victories from 288 starts. However, in percentage terms, he lags behind Argentinian legend Juan Manuel Fangio, whose 24 wins came from just 52 starts.
Most career points
Any analysis of F1 points totals is inevitably going to skew towards more modern drivers, as the sport’s scoring system was overhauled in 2010 to give 25 points for a win, instead of the previous 10, and the number of races in a season has risen to 23, up from 16 for much of the 1980s and ’90s.
Nonetheless, Hamilton stands alone at the top on 4165.5 points, a long way ahead of second-placed Sebastian Vettel on 3061.
Most pole positions
In addition to over a century of race wins, Hamilton is also the only driver to hit triple figures in pole positions, having started 103 of his 288 races from the head of the grid.
Once again, though, Fangio has the Briton beaten in percentage terms, with 29 poles from just 52 starts.
Most wins with the same team
Since joining Mercedes in 2013, Hamilton has enjoyed almost unbroken success, and a victory at the 2020 Turkish Grand Prix saw him overtake another of Schumacher’s records, as the driver with the most wins for one team.
Of Hamilton’s 103 victories, 82 have now come with the Silver Arrows, while Schumacher notched 72 wins for Ferrari Appropriately enough, Hamilton’s win at Istanbul also secured his seventh World Championship, tying him with Schumacher at the top of F1’s all-time standings.
Most consecutive race starts
Until his COVID-enforced absence from the 2020 Sakhir Grand Prix, Hamilton had started every race he had been entered in since his debut in 2007 – a record 265.
Second on this list is Daniel Ricciardo with 210 consecutive starts, meaning the Australian is on course to surpass Hamilton’s tally if he starts every race from now until the beginning of the 2024 season.
Most consecutive race (and points) finishes
Here are another couple of records that were halted by Hamilton’s absence from the 2020 Sakhir Grand Prix, as he had previously finished 48 consecutive races in the points, thanks largely to the bulletproof reliability of his Mercedes.
Notably, since joining the Silver Arrows in 2013, Hamilton has suffered just five mechanical retirements across 178 races.
Most podium finishes
Hamilton has the opposition beaten all ends up here, with 182 top-three finishes in his F1 career so far, having overtaken Schumacher’s tally of 155 at the 2020 Spanish Grand Prix. He has scored at least five podium finishes in each of his F1 seasons.
Most races finished in the points
Hamilton’s prolificacy since joining Mercedes has also helped him top the list of most races finished in the points, having scored in 249 Grands Prix so far.
Once again, he overtook Schumacher to claim the record, going north of the German’s 221 at the 2020 Tuscan Grand Prix.
Most points in a season
Another record with a heavy focus on modern drivers, Hamilton’s tally of 413 in 2019 is the highest seasonal total of anyone in F1 history.
The Briton also has the record for most points in a debut season with 109 in 2007, notably set before F1’s points reset in 2010.
Under the 2022 scoring system, Hamilton would have scored as many as 265 points in his debut year.
Most races led
Having had front-running machinery for almost all his F1 career, Hamilton has led at least one lap of a staggering 177 of his 288 Grands Prix, or 61 percent, for another record that he snaffled from Schumacher, doing so this time at the 2019 Russian Grand Prix.
Most laps and longest distance led
A couple of very similar records to bracket together here. Hamilton has led 5,396 laps in his F1 career to date, equating to 27,482 kilometres.
Again, both milestones were taken off Schumacher’s hands, in March 2021 and August 2020 respectively.
Wins at most different circuits
Having won more races than everyone else, it’s no surprise to see Hamilton top the charts for most wins at different circuits, standing atop the winner’s dais at no fewer than 31 tracks.
He also holds the same record for pole positions, starting from the front of the grid at 32 distinct circuits.
Most races with one engine manufacturer
Uniquely, Hamilton has raced with a Mercedes power unit in each of the 288 races he has started, first as a customer of McLaren, and then with the Silver Arrows’ factory team. He is some way ahead of second-placed Kimi Raikkonen, who started 209 races with a Ferrari engine behind him.
Only driver to win a race in every season completed
Helped by making his F1 debut in a front-running McLaren in 2007, Hamilton has won at least one race in every season he has competed in. He won just one race in a comparatively fallow 2013, up to 11 in 2014, 2018, 2019 and 2020.
A few records he shares with others
Having overtaken so many of Schumacher’s records, it’s no surprise that Hamilton is still level pegging with the German in several areas.
The two jointly have the records for most championship wins (seven), most wins at a single Grand Prix (eight), most seasons with a win (15) and most pole positions at a single Grand Prix (eight), a record also shared by Ayrton Senna. Meanwhile, Hamilton ties Jacques Villeneuve for the most wins in a debut season (four).