Sebastian Vettel, Lewis Hamilton, Circuit Gilles Villeneuve, 2019

Vettel is 12th driver to lose a race he ‘won on the road’

2019 Canadian Grand Prix stats and facts

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Sebastian Vettel was the first driver across the finishing line at the end of the Canadian Grand Prix – but he did not win the race.

This is unusual, but not unprecedented, in Formula 1 history. Indeed the driver who benefited yesterday, Lewis Hamilton, was the last driver to lose a win due to a post-race penalty. This was at the Belgian Grand Prix in 2008, when Hamilton was given a 25-second time penalty which handed victory to Felipe Massa.

Prior to that, 10 other drivers had also not been credited with wins despite crossing the finishing line in first place. Vettel is at least not as hard done by as Nelson Piquet, who missed out on two wins this way. He was disqualified after finishing first in his home race at Jacarepagua in 1982 due to a technical infringement. Five years later he saw the chequered flag first in Mexico but did not win the race as it was run in two parts due to a red flag; team mate Nigel Mansell took the laurels.

These rare circumstances happen with curious frequency in Canada. Peter Revson won the 1973 Canadian Grand Prix at Mosport despite the chequered flag originally having been shown first to Howden Ganley amid confusion over the introduction of the Safety Car. Seven years later Alan Jones won the race at its current location after finishing second to Didier Pironi, who had a one-minute penalty for jumping the start. The same thing happened 10 years after that: Gerhard Berger was the first driver home but a one-minute penalty for jumping the start dropped him behind Ayrton Senna.

Other drivers to lose wins due to infringements were James Hunt (1976 British Grand Prix, to Niki Lauda), Alain Prost (1985 San Marino Grand Prix, to Elio de Angelis), Ayrton Senna (1989 Japanese Grand Prix, to Alessandro Nannini) and Michael Schumacher (1994 Belgian Grand Prix, to Damon Hill). In the ill-fated 1978 Italian Grand Prix Mario Andretti and Gilles Villeneuve finished first and second on the road but were penalised a minute for jumping the start, handing victory to Niki Lauda.

The final case of a driver losing a ‘win’ after the race is a particularly odd one. Kimi Raikkonen was originally declared the winner of the 2003 Brazilian Grand Prix. However the race was cut short due to a red flag, and following a protest the stewards admitted they had followed the rules incorrectly and declared the results based on the completion of 53 laps instead of 54. Once that was done, Giancarlo Fisichella was declared the winner.

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Felipe Massa, Lewis Hamilton. Nick Heidfeld, Spa-Francorchamps, 2008
Hamilton was stripped of victory at Spa in 2008
Vettel led 63 laps of Sunday’s 70-lap contest, prior to which he’d only he’d six laps all season.

Hamilton’s win is his third in a row and the 78th of his career. It was also the ninth consecutive win for Mercedes, which leaves them two shy of the all-time record of 11 in a row, held by McLaren. Mercedes have managed 10 in a row twice before, but this record has eluded them so far.

Sunday’s race was the first time this year the team has failed to get both cars on the podium, as Valtteri Bottas finished fourth. He did at least nab the bonus point for fastest lap.

Lance Stroll took his third points finish of the year, all of which have been ninth places, at the track where he scored his first ever points two years earlier, also with a ninth place.

But his team mate Sergio Perez took an unwanted record. His 162nd race start saw him surpassed Johnny Herbert’s record for most starts without having a pole position. Perez’s best qualifying position is fourth, which he’s managed five times, most recently at Spa-Francorchamps last year.

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Review the year so far in statistics here:

Have you spotted any other interesting stats and facts from the Canadian Grand Prix? Share them in the comments.

2019 Canadian Grand Prix

Browse all 2019 Canadian Grand Prix articles

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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36 comments on “Vettel is 12th driver to lose a race he ‘won on the road’”

  1. Max didn’t finish a race behind his teammate for a full F1 year now. Last time was Monaco 2018

    1. Wow, that does starkly show the turn of season the Red Bull drivers had last year, doesn’t it @anunaki!

      1. Yeah I saw Will Buxton tweet this and had a wow moment myself

    2. His streak of outscoring atleast 1 Ferrari came to an end yesterday.

      1. Hey, good point! Another argument Ferrari did not have the best car in 2018.

  2. Believe this is the first time a track from the 2004 season that still using the same configuration has had its lap record broken.

    2004: Barrichello 1:13.622
    2019: Bottas 1:13.078

    1. I tell a lie, Gasly beat 2004 Monaco

      1. Although Monaco has had minor changes

        1. @f199player Yes, but those changes had zero impact on the overall lap time, so, therefore, the lap times are perfectly comparable all the way back to 2003.
          Regarding your original post: No, not the first time that has happened. In Malaysia, the official lap record previously held by 2004 got bettered in 2017, and the same happened in Brazil that season as well.

          1. Sepang did change the layout slightly though with the alterations to the last corner.

          2. @kaiie No, the layout remained the same throughout the circuit’s 19-season period in F1.

  3. Somewhere Trulli is going wild about this, complaining about Sutil in Brazil 2009.
    F1 has always been absolutely inconsistent in this sort of stuff. You just can’t enjoy the stakes because, at any time, the race directors will just ruin the fun and say, noup, Senna is not champion. Noup, Alonso didn’t push Vettel out at Monza.
    F that.

    1. Thomas Bennett (@felipemassadobrasil)
      10th June 2019, 15:17

      You would think that Trulli would have let it go after a decade though.

      1. He even has pictures!

    2. @nathanbuilder, if you are referring to the 1989 season with that remark about Senna, then Senna wouldn’t have won the 1989 title even if he hadn’t been disqualified from the Japanese GP.

      The only way he could have won the 1989 title was by winning both of the last two races and hoping that Prost failed to score in both of the last two races. Because Senna crashed out of the final race in Australia, even if he was able to claim victory in Japan, Prost would still have beaten him by 7 points.

      It’s also worth noting that, if you listen to the commentary feed, quite a few commentators were already predicting that Senna was going to be disqualified from the race before it ended, although most expected it to be for outside assistance (being bump started by the marshals pushing his car).

  4. I thought it an interesting, though admittedly slightly convoluted, thing that this is the 2nd race in a row where HAM,VET are classified 1,2nd with Vettel ending up there thanks to a penalty induced shuffle after the race (though here it was his own penalty moving him down a step, while last race it was he who moved up a step from Verstappen’s penalty); another similarity here is that in both, it meant that Hamilton’s fight for the win was after a many laps long fight to overtake, which then due to the penalty wasn’t going to change the result on its own.

    If anyone would like to argue that maybe that indicates a need to revise how we deal with mistakes/advantage taken and penalties for it, I think upon reading my first paragraph, that maybe they might have somewhat of a point (though let’s keep that discussion off this stats related article).

    1. this is the 2nd race in a row where HAM,VET are classified 1,2nd with Vettel ending up there thanks to a penalty induced shuffle after the race

      @bosyber – heh, nice one!

  5. Hypothetical 2018 French Grand Prix – 2019 Canadian Grand Prix season (think of it like an ongoing Tennis ATP Ranking):

    Top 5
    1. Hamilton – 450 pts (14 wins)
    2. Vettel – 299 pts (2 wins)
    3. Bottas – 294 pts (2 wins)
    4. Verstappen 287 pts (2 wins)
    5. Raikkonen 196 pts (1 win)

    1. That reminds me of looking at the rugby world rankings where I always catch myself thinking “Oh, it’s actually quite close ….oh, no, wait, the All Blacks are miles clear!”

  6. @keithcollantine Didn’t Perez qualify in second place in Baku in 2016 but then ended up starting 7th due to a gearbox penalty?

    1. Yes, but for stats surrounding race starting positions you have to look at where the driver actually started the race. This is why Maldonado has an F1 pole to his name (because Hamilton was sent to the back of the grid in Spain 2012 for not having enough fuel in the tank to give a sample) and why Michael Schumacher wasn’t credited with his pole position from Monaco in 2012 due to his grid penalty for clouting Bruno Senna in the previous race (also in Spain strangely).

  7. A jump-start automatically meant a 1-minute penalty in the past? And couldn’t you take the penalty during the race during pitstops?

    I thought time-penalties (added to race time) were a recent phenomenon. Earlier, you had to take it on-track unless the penalty was given in the last 10 laps or something, right?

    1. Yes until they invented the stop and go penalty. Prost in Monaco 93 is the first driver I remember to not receive a 1 min penalty for a jump start

    2. sumedh, there was no option for the driver to serve the 1 minute time penalty during the race – they just automatically added it to the overall time that it took the driver to complete the race.

  8. Does anyone else think the fastest lap bonus should be stopped? Basically its a point for the worse driver in the top 3 teams. I.e. the last driver in the top 6 cars has enough time to stop to bolt on some new tyres.

    1. Yes. But only a couple races ago it seemed like it could potentially decide the title if Hamilton and Bottas were going to go back and forth on wins and potentially come out with equal numbers for firsts and seconds. Then you might have seen them going for FLAPS in Abu Dhabi.

    2. @paulcook @dmw

      They should change the rule for 2020:

      Extra point only for the driver whose fastest lap of the race is 10th quickest. Now THAT would be more interesting.

      1. Extra point only for the driver whose fastest lap of the race is 10th quickest. Now THAT would be more interesting.

        Extra point for the driver whose 10th fastest lap is the quickest

  9. Hamilton showing Schumi levels of domination i love it. If true he has 14 wins since France 2018 Vet has 2 in that time Bottas 2. And Vet has had the car to take about 6-8 in that span. Shows the level Ham is on. A much slower Engine aswell. Nice that in the hybrid era he had a huge benefit now he can shine more even. Vettel with yet another error near Hamilton lol.

  10. After all the outrage (40% voted 1 point when I looked) from so many yesterday, it is good to be reminded that F1 has long had rules to penalise those who break the rules, with or without intent, and gain advantage by so doing. It is not a pro AMG or anti Ferrari conspiracy.

  11. @jerejj the fact that this is Gasly’s third consecutive points finish shows that while 5th to 8th doesn’t seem great, it’s still a sign of Gasly improving. Not sure that’s good, or showing he’s not up to it though?

  12. It has been 44 races and counting since the last new race winner (Bottas Russia 2017) this is the 2nd longest string – the longest being 48 races from Mark Webber 1st win (Germany 2009) to Nico Rosberg 1st win (China 2012)

    Since Germany 2009 there have only been 5 new race winners (Rosberg, Maldonado, Riccardio, Verstappen & Bottas) – in that same period (192 races) only 12 drivers have won a race: Hamilton won 69, Vettel 49, Rosberg 23, Alonso 11, Button 8, Webber 8, Riccardio 7, Verstappen 5, Bottas 5, Raikonnen 4, Barrichello 2 and Maldonado 1)

    Since Japan 2016 (51 races) there have only been 6 race winners: Hamilton 29, Vettel 10, Verstappen 4, Bottas 4, Riccaridio 3 and Raikonnen 1

  13. Justice for Spa 2008 duly served against the team that benefitted from that far more ludicrous decision.

    Karma served over a decade late.

  14. 2nd consecutive Canadian Grand Prix where the chequered flag has been waved to Sebastian Vettel before the official race winner has completed the full distance.

    Giovinazzi’s best start, beating his 14th from Australia.

    Ricciardo has passed 1000 career F1 points.

    Gasly’s best start of the season, and the joint-best of his career.

    First time this year that Giovinazzi has finished ahead of Raikkonen – only Gasly and Kubica are yet to finish a 2019 race in front of their team-mates (including races where 1 driver did not finish).

    First time this year that Gasly has started ahead of Verstappen – only Stroll has yet to start a 2019 race ahead of his team-mate.

    2nd time Vettel has led at the start of the final lap of the Canadian GP but not won the race.

    5th time Vettel has managed pole at Montreal – first circuit at which he has managed this.

    Kvyat’s 58th race for Toro Rosso, equals Vergne’s record (Sainz and Buemi managed 56 and 55 respectively).

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