German Grand Prix stats and facts

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Piquet just has to out-qualify Alonso in the next 25 races to get even

There’s one big fat obvious reason why the German Grand Prix was a landmark race.

But a few other points of interest popped up as well: Nelson Piquet Jnr finally out-qualified his team mate and Force India had by far their best qualifying performance ever. Still no points, though…

Mark Webber scored his first Grand Prix victory – more stats on that here: Mark Webber finally wins an F1 race

He is the 102nd different driver to win a Grand Prix and the 93rd to take pole position. It was his first front row start this year.

All three Grand Prix winners from Australia can claim a victory in Germany: Jack Brabham in 1966 on the Nordschleife and Alan Jones in 1979 on the Hockenheimring.

Red Bull had their third one-two, giving them as many as Brawn, all of which were scored this year. Ten other constructors have scored more.

Red Bull scored their first win at the only circuit where their predecessors Stewart won a Grand Prix, with Johnny Herbert ten years earlier. On that occasion Rubens Barrichello was driving for the team and finished third behind Jarno Trulli.

Fernando Alonso made the 12th fastest lap of his career, giving him as many as Alberto Ascari, Jack Brabham, Rene Arnoux, Juan Pablo Montoya and Felipe Massa. It was his first since the 2007 Italian Grand Prix.

Brawn failed to get a car on the podium for the first time in their history, and with no McLarens or Force Indias there too it meant no podium for a Mercedes-powered car for the first time this year.

Heikki Kovalainen started from his best qualifying position of the year – sixth. McLaren took the third row of the grid, their best qualifying performance in 2009.

Adrian Sutil achieved his and Force India’s best ever starting position with seventh. His previous best was 15th.

Felipe Massa reached the podium for the first time this year. He has now finished in the points in the last five races.

Nelson Piquet Jnr out-qualified Fernando Alonso for the first time since they became team mates. The score is now 26-1 to Alonso.

Rumours suggest Sebastien Bourdais will be dropped by Toro Rosso this week. So far this year he has been beaten 7-2 by Buemi in qualifying, and 3-2 in races where both have finished.

Jenson Button kept up his record of scoring a point in every race and finishing every lap so far this year. He has now scored exactly 300 points in his F1 career.

Despite scoring only a sixth and a fifth in the last two races, his lead over the second placed driver in the championship has fallen by just five points from 26 (over Barrichello) to 21 (over Vettel).

This was the 16th Grand Prix on the ‘new’ Nurburgring, but only the second time it has held the German Grand Prix. It has previously held the European Grand Prix 12 times (1984, 1995-1996 and 1999-2007), the Luxembourg Grand Prix (cough) twice (1997-1998) and the German Grand Prix just once (1985).

Finally, after much discussion on the live blog we decided the last time a driver won a race despite being given a penalty was Michael Schumacher at Magny-Cours in 2002. If anyone can think of a more recent example, please post it below!

Have you spotted any other stats and facts from the German Grand Prix? Post them below…

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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74 comments on “German Grand Prix stats and facts”

  1. 50% of top 10 in qualifying where Mercedes powered cars

  2. “Red Bull scored their first win at the only circuit where their predecessors Stewart won a Grand Prix”

    think you mean Webber!

    I also think Heidfeld continued his run of finishes

    1. That is too common to mention, I think.. :P

    2. Red Bull is Webber’s team…

      1. What Keith means is: Red Bull didn’t score their first win ever (that was at Shanghai), but this was their first win at this particular track.

    3. Red Bull scored their first win at the Nurburgring, the only circuit where their predecessors Stewart won a Grand Prix.

  3. Another Grand Prix in Germany where Raikkonen didn’t finish. He really doesn’t have much luck there, does he?

  4. Jenson Button won at Hungary 2006 after a 10-place penalty. Thats more recent :-)

  5. A race where a driver won despite a penalty – Button in Hungary 06? He won from 14th following a 10 place grid penalty.

  6. Hamilton should have been a bit more careful, you can not win the whole bloody Grand Prix in one corner. I realize he had a puncture, but regardless of the fact, if he was a little bit extra careful he could have avoided the incident and finished in top 5 at least. Everything is a risk, but Mr Hamilton needs to learn to take a calculated risk…

    1. Yeah, that’s what we need, cars that just line up behind each other and don’t take any risks …

      1. I agree that we need more aggressive drivers on the grid, but… Hamilton makes too many mistakes. Maybe the problem is that he thinks his car is able to do everything he wants it to, and even though he might be a great driver, the car is not indestructible. He needs to learn the limits imposed by his car and by the laws of physics.

        1. or maybe he just doesn’t realise that there’s more than 1 car out there, and that their job is not to just get out of his way.

        2. Sorry but i totally disagree.

          Hamilton took a big risk no questions there. But lets not mistake the fact that he very nearly made it stick. And if Webber had not swerved back over the other side of the track after hitting barecllo (not that i have any problem with it as it was a racing accident) he would not have punchered Hamilton car. And then what would the headlines have been if he had won.

          I though it made the start very exciting and dramatic and that is why i watch F1

          1. IFs don’t win races.

          2. Bigbadderboom
            13th July 2009, 10:48

            But contrary to your opinion FLIG isn’t it better to throw the dice and get an occasional 6 rather than never role the dice, and Hamilton is a WDC and multiple open wheel champ, so I think he may have a better evaluation of the risk/reward than you! This is the first time Hamilton was competitive, and he was equipped with KERS, “IF” that move had stuck (and i’m not sure what else he could have done) we would not have seen Webber and Rubens shoot off and may have seen one of the best ever GP’s. Hats off to lewis for giving it a shot.

          3. I completely agree with Patrickl and Bigbadderboom, moves like that make races exciting!

            The likes of Hamilton go for ambitious moves wherever possible, even if it seems like there’s a 1% chance of success. That’s why I used to like Montoya :)

            I’ve found the season really boring so far, the first race was kinda good and the wet races, but the others have been boring and predictable. This grand prix was so much better, literally didn’t know who was going to win right up until the last few laps cos there was still that treat of rain.

            Great race, and I hope Lewis continues to make ambitious moves in the hope of one sticking :) adds to the fun.

          4. I want to make it clear that I’m not against trying. I don’t want 20 Heidfelds finishing 50 boring races. I enjoy the whole thing, I just think that Lewis makes too many mistakes. I don’t understand why people keep saying that my opinion is not valid because I’m not a F1 pilot. He clearly ends up in the sand or with useless tyres more than he should, that’s all I’m saying. Maybe he’ll learn in time. I hope, for the good of the sport, and maybe we can enjoy some Hamilton-Vettel-Alonso-Kubica fights like I used to enjoy Mansell-Prost-Senna-Piquet.

          5. Well the reality is that Hamilton finished at the back of the grid. And we can sit here debating whether he could have won or not all we like. If a driver wants to ignore risks that could potentially happen at the start of a GPs then something will happen to them more likely than not.

            The fact of the matter is that there is plenty of time during a Grand Prix for drivers to take whatever risks they want to overtake. It doesnt have to be all done at the start of the GP and certainly not at the first corner. That is all I am trying to say and I stick by that. Hamilton is good driver and it would have been nice to see him finish in top 3 or top 5.

          6. The was nothing wrong with what Hamilton did at the start. Webber was just recovering from banging wheels with Barichello and pushed Hamilton off track and also damaged his tyres.
            If you are too cautious at the start you can cause a pile up behind you that may still take you out.

      2. I’m with you it was a ballsy move, unrewarded, but if it had of worked, would Barrichello still be bitchin’?

        1. Here we go, poor baby Hamilton again.

          Nobody is saying drivers shouldn’t take any risks, that’s just ridiculous. Any passing move is a risk, some more than others.

          What is being criticised here is Hamilton’s poor judgement. It’s the second time this season he destroys his race on the first corner for being too aggressive (he ran into the back of Kubica in Monaco).

          No one is saying he’s a bad driver, and I love the risk taking (Massa’s improbable move on Hamilton at the Hungaroring last year was just awesome). But he needs to work on his assessment.

          One thing’s for sure in F1, though: it’s better to be aggressive than plain boring.

          1. I agree

    2. Hamilton is not running for the championship… He has everything to gain, nothing to lose.

      He had every right to try to make that move… If it had stuck, it would’ve been a memorable drive.

      1. EXACTLY. but thats a completly different issue with most F1 ‘fans’. Hi profile drivers are so quickly evaluated and hailed or stoned for thei actions. there is never any middle ground. He made the move and hes “god”. looses it and he “does it all the time”. Bottom line is that those risks won him a title, and every formula one risk is a calculated on (unless ur name is takuma sato), just sometimes it doesnt work out well. now, i hate hamilton, but that doesnt make him any less of a great driver.
        ‘Hiedfelds’ might win a race but they dont win a championship.

    3. Risk and success go hand in hand, it’s a balancing act. These are the best drivers in the world and therfore can make that assessment better than most, particularly arm-chair commentators.

      Besides, Hamilton did nothing overly risky at all, he steamed up the grid thanks to a super start and a KERS button, keeping well clear of others (unlike some, *cough* Webber *cough*).

      His move was sublime, his only problem at turn one was unfortunately Webbers front wing…

      1. To say that he messed up Turn 1 because of Webber is just ludicrous.

        1. ok then how did he mess up? you Tell me! did he mess up because he was making up places at the start, something that every driver tries to do at the begining of the race? and for people to say that he makes to many mistakes is stupid! he is world champ, and his driving game has been right at the top this season! everyone that has a say in F1 knows he has been doing a terific job in with the car that he has at the moment, what happend at turn 1 was a racing incident two cars got close together and colided, hamilton came worse off but no1 was to blame.

          however if it was massa or alonso who was leading at the first corner and then one of them who got a puncture, im sure that webber would be in alot of hot water at the moment.

          1. @Hell$torm
            The way I saw it he appeared to overshoot the corner anyway, perhaps losing it on the infamous bump the drivers were complaining about. Granted the shunt from webber deflated his tire anyway. Without Webber’s hit I think he would have slotted into 2nd behind Barichello. Then again I haven’t yet re-watched it. Still I think it was an impressive effort

        2. Hamilton didn’t ‘mess up’, your suggestion that he did is ludicrous. He overshot the corner as a direct result of Webber puncturing his tyre, watch it again…

  7. I live Hamilton’s guts. You gotta take risks in F1 or any other sport for that matter. You can’t win them all but when you do, it sure makes your decision stand out. Had he won this race from P5, I would have liked to see the comments of those who now think it was a silly mistake.
    He could have taken it easy and got hit from behind and some people would still have thought him careless, stupid, silly or any other adjectives I’m constantly seeing about Hamilton’s jump-start maneuver.

  8. BTW, is it the first time that the director of GPDA has won a grand prix? DC never won anything while he was director, right?

    1. Stirling Moss and Jackie Stewart would both have won races while directors of the GPDA.

      1. Michael Schumacher won five championships as primary director of the GPDA…

  9. Todd, that’s a rather mundane observation. A driver on the grid has to watch both ahead and back but the only thing one has to do is drive the car forward, not backwards and if you have to force your way past a slower driver, you do. That, Toad, is called overtaking.

    1. Aright, alright, don’t get all sanctimonious.

  10. All three winners this year are near-enough new winners. Mark Webber scored his first win this year, and prior to this year, Vettel and Button had only won one race each.

  11. F1 is about risk-taking. Every split second counts and if you have to make use of it, you have got to have the balls to take every risk possible and if it doesn’t go well, then you put your hand up and try again next time.
    F1 wouldn’t be interesting without tough high-risk overtaking decisions. It’s such decisions that keep me on the edge of the seat during a Formula 1 race no matter who the driver is. If any of you don’t like seeing risk-taking, go watch curling, bowling, badminton or dwarf tossing.

  12. Ajokay – do you know which other current F1 drivers have never won a GP?

    1. Yes – look at their results on any number of websites…

    2. Current drivers who haven’t achieved an F1 victory yet (and their best positions):

      Rosberg (2nd), Glock (2nd), Heidfeld (2nd), Piquet (2nd), Nakajima (6th), Buemi (7th), Bourdais (7th), Sutil (8th).

      Three others (Kubica, Kovalainen, Trulli) have only won one race in F1 up until this point.

      1. Four…Webber’s only got 1 as well!!!

  13. Heidfeld finished yet again!!

  14. Rumours suggest Sebastien Bourdais will be dropped by Toro Rosso this week. So far this year he has been beaten 7-2 by Buemi in qualifying, and 3-2 in races where both have finished.


    1. Aaron Shearer
      13th July 2009, 13:06

      It’s not been confirmed yet.

      “Toro Rosso is expected to confirm within the next 48 hours that it has decided to part company with the Frenchman.”

      It could still all be speculation at the moment. I really hope it is, I quite like Bourdais. Hopefully if he is replaced he could stay on as test driver or maybe can get a 2010 seat with someone else.

      If not maybe he could race in some other forumlae or the Le Mans series.

      1. He’ll limp back to indycar

        1. I hope he can find some money and get in the Edmonton race in two weeks. I’m sure Newman-Haas would build him a car. I would love to see him back on this side of the Atlantic. He makes the field stronger, and Indycar needs a good villain. America loves to root against the French!

  15. Webber now the driver with more races till first win (130). Previously Barrichello was the guy with 124 till 1st victory.

    Car number 14 didn’t win since 1971 (Jo Stiffert’s BRM) at Austrian GP.

    Last Webber’s victory – F3000 at Magny Cours 2001.

    Sixth 1-2 of the year.

    Last time Williams finished in points in Germany was 2004 with Montoya (P5). Rosberg did it finally again.

    McLaren finished in points again after 4 races.

  16. Casino Square
    13th July 2009, 14:46

    How’s this for scraping the barrel…

    -It’s now been 2 years since the last mid season driver change (when Vettel and Yamamoto replace Speed and Winkelhock respectively)

    -Massa, Rosberg and Button all finished in the same order as they did in Silverstone, except this time Barrichello was behind them

    -The top 6 was identical to the British GP, but in a different order

    -Webber was the first driver from the Eastern side of the southern hemisphere to win this century

    -He was also the first driver from outside of Europe or South America to win Jaques Villeneuve in 1997

    -Presumably the first ever win by a driver whose initials are MW!

    -The tallest driver ever to win a race?

    1. Kubica’s pretty tall, isn’t he?

      1. Casino Square
        13th July 2009, 17:07

        Yeah Kubica could be bigger, it was just a guess. But he’s got to be one of the tallest to have won I reckon. And seeing tinchy Massa on the podium beside him suggested to me Massa might be the smallest GP winner of all time!

  17. Captain Caveman
    13th July 2009, 15:59

    Mark Webber is the giant of Formula One this year at 6’1″ (184 cm). Whilst Kubica is 1.81 from the sites i have read.

    Sad what you can find on the WWW

    1. Gerhard Berger was very tall..

        1. Casino Square
          14th July 2009, 21:20

          Oh well, I reckon he’s definitely the tallest Australian winner then, saying as there are only 3 of them…

  18. What about this for a stat: The first time a driver speaks his mind without any PR smoothing for a long, long time. Just so that someone new to the sport do not think it is a first, Nigel Mansel, for instance, gave an interview in the second half of 1987 suggesting that Honda (Williams’ engine supplier back then) could make things difficult for him in his fight against Piquet because Piquet and Honda were moving to Lotus in the following season. See that the guy was not accusing the team of incompetence, no sir. There were no nice blogs in those days so I can’t tell what the British fans made of it, but I believe their reaction towards Mansel’s (“our Mansel”, nonetheless)words were rather kinder.

    1. What about this for a stat: The first time a driver speaks his mind without any PR smoothing for a long, long time.

      LOL! Though it occurs to me Alonso may have been a tad off-message in ’07 :-)

    2. I remember Prost comparing his (underperforming) Ferrari to a tractor.

  19. How many German GPs has Kimi not finished now? Keine Schwein gegessen.

    Also, not a statistics thing, but I’ll comment that Hamilton would not have had his tire cut by Webber if not for the airliner-width front wings now in place. Sutil might have the same complaint. I was pretty sure before the season that we would see the sky darkened with flying carbon fiber at every first corner. It hasn’t come to pass, but it happened here to spoil what would have been one of the most amazing starts in recent F1 History.

    1. James Bolton
      13th July 2009, 19:00

      Kimi in Germany:

      2001,02,03,04 Retired in each race
      2005 P3
      2006 P3
      2007 (Euro GP) Retired
      2008 P6
      2009 Retired

      This was Kimi’s second retirement of 2009, he retired from just two events in each of the whole of 2008 and 2009.

      The last time Kimi had so few points at this stage of the season was in 2004, when he had 8.

      1. Casino Square
        13th July 2009, 20:09

        Actually Raikkonen retired from the lead in the 2005 German GP- or are you refering to the 2005 European GP… in which he also retired from the lead?

  20. James Bolton
    13th July 2009, 19:10

    This is still Ferrari’s worst season since 1993. At this point that year, they only had one podium, compared to the two they have now.

    Using the old points system, Ferrari would have 13 points now, compared to the 7 they had at this point in 1993.

    Ferrari are improving in 2009: in the first four races they had one point scoring finish and 3 points, in the previous four races they have had six points finishes and 26 points.

    However, Red Bull have scored 54 in the past four races…

    1. Raikkonen has a 3rd and a 6th: 4+1= 5
      Massa has a 3rd, two 4ths and two 6ths: 4+3+3+1+1= 12

      So 17 points overall, still their worst since ’93 as you said.

  21. James Bolton
    13th July 2009, 19:15

    Surprisingly, Jenson Button has only had three German Grand’s Prix that have yielded a poorer result then the P5 he got on Sunday:

    2002 – Ret
    2003 – 8th
    2008 – 17th

  22. James Bolton
    13th July 2009, 19:20

    Jenson now has 9 points finishes in a row. Jim Clark had 12 which I think is the British record.
    The overall record is Schumacher who had 24 in 2001 – 2003.

  23. michael counsell
    13th July 2009, 19:51

    Alonso was the 7th driver to get a fastest lap this year and Renault were the sixth different manufacturer.

  24. Sergio de la Torre
    13th July 2009, 23:41

    Alonso did 5 laps in 1:33 when he wasn’t blocked by traffic (from his last stop to the back of Brawns)

    L48 1:33.744
    L49 1:33.365 (fastest lap)
    L50 1:33.526
    L51 1:33.749
    L52 1:33.777

    Trulli was the other driver in 1:33 with 1 lap (1:33.654)

  25. Worst Alonso performance ever in qualifying! Piquet’s car was at least 0.5sec slower due not getting the updates again. Pat Symonds must be coming under some pressure by now surely …. those starts … remember the old days of Renault starts with Trulli overtaking half the grid to the first turn?

    1. And then they banned launch control…

      Frankly, it was a good call to make – this should be about best drivers in the world…

  26. Micheal Parkes was 6’4″ so I think must the tallest F1 winner. Dan Gurney must be taller than Webber.

    1. I don’t think Mike Parkes ever won a world championship F1 race. I’ve had a look on Forix and it says he had two seconds in 1966, but no wins…

  27. wong chin kong
    14th July 2009, 14:28

    Red Bull is the only and first team to date in F1 2009 to have BOTH drivers winning at least a race each. (Red bull race winners: Vettel(2) Webber(1); Brawn race winner: Button (6) Rubens(0).

  28. Well done Mark. This was a great race to win. Its a shame what happened to Lewis at the start, he had such a good oppertunity with the upgraded car. aww well we’ll see what happens next time. excited to see how the season finishes!

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