Valtteri Bottas, Dieter Zetsche, Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes, Shanghai International Circuit, 2019

Third consecutive one-two gives Mercedes chance to break record

2019 Chinese Grand Prix stats and facts

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Mercedes have got their 2019 F1 season off to an almost perfect start.

The team scored their third consecutive one-two in the Chinese Grand Prix, the first time this has been done since Nigel Mansell and Riccardo Patrese swept the first three rounds of 1992 in their all-conquering Williams-Renault FW14Bs.

Williams’ domination in terms of lap time was on an entirely different scale, however. Valtteri Bottas qualified his Mercedes three-tenths of a second faster than Mercedes’ nearest rival in Shanghai, whereas Mansell was a staggering 2.1 seconds faster than the closest non-Williams when he took pole position for the 1992 Brazilian Grand Prix.

No team has ever scored four consecutive one-twos at the start of a season (including all points-paying races), so Mercedes could set a new record in the Azerbaijan Grand Prix.

Bottas took the seventh pole position of his career, putting him level with Jacques Laffite. He also finished second on the occasion of his seventh pole position, in the 1981 Spanish Grand Prix, which was memorably won by Gilles Villeneuve.

Mercedes have scored 130 out of 132 possible points over the opening three races. That’s because they missed out on scoring the bonus point for fastest lap in Bahrain and China. This weekend it went to Pierre Gasly, who became the 132nd driver in the history of the championship to set a lap, immediately following Charles Leclerc who did the same in Bahrain.

Riccardo Patrese, Nigel Mansell, Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez, 1992
Williams began 1992 with three one-twos
With his 75th career victory, Hamilton is 16 wins away from equalling Michael Schumacher’s record of 91. He could still theoretically do it in the 18 remaining races this year. It was his sixth win in China – he already has the most wins in this race by far.

It was the 199th consecutive points-scoring race for Mercedes engines. That streak began at the 2008 Chinese Grand Prix, which saw Hamilton taking a dominant win in a Mercedes-powered car while Ferrari had their drivers swap positions. How times change…

It probably didn’t escape your attention that this was the 1,000th round of the world championship. It was also the 250th start for Toro Rosso, which means they have now started as many races as Jordan.

1,000 world championship races

While Europe has held the most races of any continent an increasing number of rounds have been added in Asia. Vietnam has already been confirmed on the 2020 F1 calendar. However the sport’s bosses have indicated they want more races in the USA as well.

The vast majority of world championship races have been run to F1 rules. But from 1950 to 1960 the Indianapolis 500 was part of the series, and in 1952 and 1952 the championship was run to F2 rules. (F1 races where F2 cars were also admitted have been counted as F1 races.)

Since the championship began 11 different naturally-aspirated engine formats have won races.

Although Alfa Romeo is the only team on the grid which can claim a presence in the first world championship race at Silverstone in 1950, no one has started more races than Ferrari. They’ve competed in every season and missed only 27 races.

The driver who started the most world championship races is Rubens Barrichello. However Kimi Raikkonen is on course to break this record next year.

Competition between different tyre suppliers ended in 2007. Goodyear, who left F1 after 1999, scored all their wins before that, though they were the sole tyre supplier in several seasons.

The 10 most successful Formula 1 drivers have won almost half the races held to date between them. As well as winning the 1,000th race last weekend Hamilton also won the 900th round, at Bahrain in 2014.

Unusually, none of the three races so far this year have been won by the driver who started from pole position, unlike 41% of the races held since the championship began.

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2019 Chinese Grand Prix

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Author information

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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44 comments on “Third consecutive one-two gives Mercedes chance to break record”

  1. Love the stats features – thanks @keithcollantine

  2. thanks for the write up.

  3. Ferrari did’t start on 27 out of 1000. That is not less than 1%, that’s exactly 2,7%. That 1 in every 37 they missed, yet they get a lot of extra money, because they where always there?

    1. Apologies, silly mistake there. Have tweaked it.

    2. I was surprised they missed that many, but you can straight up eliminate the 11 indy 500s, as no regular took that seriously, so that’s just 16 they missed.

      Famously they missed the first ever race. They also missed the 1959 British Grand Prix due to strikes in Italy stopping them from travelling and missed the 1966 edition honouring striking workers at home. They missed the 1968 Monaco Grand Prix due to a safety protest after Lorenzo Bandini’s faral crash the previous year.

      The rest i think were largely long haul trips in the 50s / 60s not considered economically viable (USA and SA), which is understandable for the times.

      There wete also three races they entered, but withdrew, but i don’t know how that is counted in this tally.

  4. This is Lewis Hamilton’s 4th circuit that he managed to win 6 times, the other being Canada, Hungary and USA.

    The only other drivers to win a race 6 times are Prost, Senna and Schumacher, so far Schumacher is the only driver to win the same race 7 times and even 8 times.

    It was the 40th race without a new race winner – the 4th longest gap with the record being 48 races (Mark Webber – Germany 2009 till Nico Rosberg – China 2012).
    Since Spain 2012 there have only been 3 new race winners in a 137 races (Riccardio 2014, Verstappen 2016 and Bottas 2017), Hamilton has won a massive 58 races in that same period and Vettel a further 30.

    1. @jelle-van-der-meer

      This is Lewis Hamilton’s 4th circuit that he managed to win 6 times, the other being Canada, Hungary and USA.

      America is not a circuit. Hamilton has won the United States Grand Prix 6 times, that much is true. 5 of these wins were on the Circuit of the Americas, 1 was on the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.

    2. It was the 40th race without a new race winner – the 4th longest gap with the record being 48 races (Mark Webber – Germany 2009 till Nico Rosberg – China 2012).

      The only way this record stands is if Leclerc gets another shot like Bahrain.

    3. It shouldn’t be long now before Leclerc ends that stream.

  5. With his 75th career victory, Hamilton is 16 wins away from equalling Michael Schumacher’s record of 91. He could still theoretically do it in the 18 remaining races this year. It was his sixth win in China – he already has the most wins in this race by far.

    With 16 less wins but 16 more pole positions, Hamilton now equals Schumacher for most poles and wins combined (159). Schumacher with 68 poles and 91 wins. Hamilton with 84 poles and 75 wins.

  6. Jonathan Parkin
    15th April 2019, 12:58

    I still remember in 2000 there was a long standing record of non pole position winners. What is the current record does anybody know

    1. Thomas Bennett (@felipemassadobrasil)
      15th April 2019, 18:10

      I don’t know the record but you were right about 2000; first 7 races weren’t won from Pole, 10 from first 12 too before Schumi ruined it and dominated the rest of the season.

    2. Jonathan Parkin, if you mean the case of a driver winning without having taken a pole position, at the moment Verstappen has five wins without taking pole – he is the current holder of the record of most wins without ever taking pole position (Ricciardo had held that until he took pole in Mexico last year).

      1. I have an opinion
        16th April 2019, 6:44

        Ricciardo’s first pole position was at Monaco in 2016. By that time he had won three Grands Prix.
        https://www.racefans.net/2018/11/02/verstappen-breaks-record-for-most-wins-without-a-pole/

  7. Wins since Germany 2018:

    Bottas: 1
    Hamilton: 10
    Raikkonen: 1
    Verstappen: 1
    Vettel: 1

    Yikes.

    1. We’ve seen worse.
      In 2013 Vettel won 12 of the final 14 races.
      Or between 2003 & 2004 there was an even longer spell where MSc won everything except for 2 races.

      1. @coldfly

        Yeah, it was more a general observation of a recent form rather than a reference to any records. Can’t see those Vettel or Schumi streaks being matched any time soon.

  8. This is going to be such a crap season. I’m so sick of Merc/Hamilton winning boring, uncompetitive, snoozer races. Yesterday was a great cure for insomia.

    1. @jblank

      Help me Valtteri Bottas, you’re my only hope!

      Seriously, though, the closest WDC in the Mercedes era (sorry Hybrid era) were between Rosberg and Hamilton.

      But I fear this season they will continue to use the fear of Ferrari to suppress Bottas. Which could lead to another 2018 style WDC.

      I’m hoping Ferrari, Red Bull, or Bottas step up soon.

      1. Meh, Bottas is on Team Evil so I don’t want him winning. I’m just sick of the dominance because almost every Merc win is a flatout boring race. F1 just is getting so predictable and it’s dare I say…..boring right now.

        1. @jblank What is so evil about Team Evil? XDD

    2. Yeah, why can’t Ferrari go by to burning oil from their special oil tanks ;(

      1. I don’t care if it’s Ferrari, Red Bull, Racing Point, doesn’t matter, we need better races we need more competitive races. I’m a McLaren and Red Bull fan, obviously this isn’t the best period for me, but I’d settle for good racing with unpredictability. Bahrain at least was unpredictable.

    3. @jblank

      There has been major rule changes since 2014. The Germans have simply done a better job and came out on top no matter what has been thrown at them. Perhaps the anger and disappointment should be directed towards the guys who have been failing to mount a challenge. Merc have adapted the best through all this and should be applauded rather then ridiculed.

      Love or hate them you got to respect them for keeping it together as a team !!!

  9. The “underdogs” win! …… again

    1. Yep. They won despite not having a chance on tracks with long straights (so you can imagine how boring the twisty races will be) and on top of that, on a track Hamilton isn’t very good at.

      1. Not good at? He’s won there six times.

        1. Yes, but suddenly this year he had lost the touch of the track and it was no longer one of his good tracks – that is what was said before the red lights turned off…
          I like Mercedes and I’m impressed with what they do and how they make their homework. On top of that they have great drivers, Hamilton rarely makes costly mistakes – he doesn’t let his temper run off with him. But it is just so boring to see them win easily over and over again…

  10. Ferrari. They’ve competed in every season and missed only 27 races.

    For those who wondering which are these 27 races, and why Ferrari didn’t take part, all info is here :

      1. Interestingly they did take part in some Indy 500s and did not qualify? That should count as an entry though

  11. Not to throw out the season yet, but… Hamilton’s 31 point lead over Vettel is larger than any point deficit Vettel overcame in 2018.

    If my maths are correct:
    –The largest point swing Vettel made in 2018 was 25 points, which took 5 races and included a Hamilton DNF. After Spain and heading into Monaco last season, Hamilton was up 17, and after the British GP Vettel was up 8. That was erased in the next race by Hamilton when Vettel DNF’d.
    –The biggest swing Vettel made in 2018 without a Hamilton DNF was 18pts, Spain to Canada. That was during Ferrari’s better half of the season.
    –In 2017, the largest points swing Vettel made was 25 points between Bahrain (tied going into the weekend) and Monaco (Vettel 25pts ahead after the race).

    Even if we were to say the cars this year are about even, some tracks favor each, there is nothing outside of reliability or Merc going down a development dead end (a la Ferrari last year) that appears to allows Vettel to come back. I’ll be happy to eat my words should that happen because I’d like to see an actual title fight (even better if it is somehow Leclerc). But with the current deficit, even with only 3 races complete, I’m calling it for Merc—and I don’t think it’s a risky call.

  12. I don’t really understand the ‘run to F2 rules’ section. it makes it sound like there were F1 teams competing but they awarded the championship to F2 teams instead. all that happened was they adopted the regs for F2 (2.0 litre normall aspirated as opposed to supercharged 4.5 litre) in order to increase the number of competing teams) and made them the F1 regs.

    you might as well have a graph showing how many races were run to every change in regulation in the history of the sport. it’s arbitrary.

    1. “all that happened was they adopted the regs for F2 (2.0 litre normall aspirated as opposed to supercharged 4.5 litre) in order to increase the number of competing teams) and made them the F1 regs

      They didn’t though … that is the bit you don’t understand. The F1 regs did not change, they just ran World Championship races to F2 regulations. The F1 races that year were non championship events.

      you might as well have a graph showing how many races were run to every change in regulation in the history of the sport. it’s arbitrary

      That is completely different

    2. @frood19, you are wrong to state that “they adopted the regs for F2 … and made them the F1 regs”.

      What actually happened was that, in late 1951, the CSI – the forerunner of the FIA – announced that they would introduce a new set of regulations for Formula 1 that would come into effect in 1954, which were the regulations that limited engine size to 2.5 litres if normally aspirated and 750cc if forced induction was used.

      The CSI then announced was that, for 1952 and 1953, all races of Grand Prix status that counted towards the World Drivers Championship would be held to Formula 2 regulations. The regulations for Formula 1 which existed in 1951 continued to exist in 1952 and 1953, which is why there were non-championship Grand Prix in 1952 and 1953 that took place using the existing Formula 1 regulations.

  13. I don’t understand why you don’t understand this… I thought I was the pedant (well, one of them…) on this site… ;-)
    I think you provide your own answer: it’s the difference between ‘adopted’ and ‘changed’… ;-)

  14. Polesitter is still yet to win in 2019, the last time the first 3 races were not won by the polesitter was 2012.

    As well as winning the 1,000th race last weekend Hamilton also won the 900th round, at Bahrain in 2014

    As far as I can tell this sets a new record for winning “milestone” races (at 2). Since no other active driver has won a milstone race (most recent non active driver was Alonso in Singapore 2008) the earliest this record could be beaten by another driver would be the 1300th world championship (at the current rate of races roughly sometime around 2034).

  15. Wouldn’t be surprised if Mercedes themselves prevent a 1-2 to show that their car isn’t as dominant as it seems.

  16. Hamilton has now won more races from 2014-2019 (53 wins) than Seb over his entire career 20070-19 (52 wins). At the end of 2013, the stats were:

    Seb 39 wins 45 poles (BMW, Toro Rosso, Red Bull years – 5 years+)
    Ham 22 wins 31 poles (McLaren years – 6 years)

    From 2014-current, the stats are:
    Seb 13 wins 10 poles (5 years counting)
    Ham 53 wins 53 poles (5 years counting)
    – 40 wins more & 43 more poles for Ham in just 5 years…

    1. @arros3 – And no one would have believed someone who predicted that at the time. I’m not saying someone did and wasn’t believed, but it would have been seen as unbelievable even as a work of fiction if someone had hypothesized it.

  17. it beggars belief that toro rosso wich entered the sport mid-2000s has now raced in 1/4 of the races in the history of F1…probably too many races today and too few back in the first 3 decades…

    1. It’s really not as far off as you may imagine. This is F1’s 70th season (1950 – 2019) and Toro Rosso’s 14th (2006 – 2019). That is 1/5th or 20% of F1 history.* If they have seen 1/4th of the total races, the difference is only 5% or roughly 50 races. Spreading those additional races out over STR’s time in F1 means that they have about 3.5-3.75 races above average per season.**

      Point is, even with the length of current seasons, STR isn’t over-represented in the history of the sport by much.

      *—One could count this as 13 STR seasons and 69 F1 seasons because we are so early in the year, but the point is nearly the same.
      **—For clarity, assuming 1000 races (caveats aside) and 69 seasons, the average season over the history of F1 is 14.5 races.

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