Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes, Autodromo do Algarve, 2020

How many F1 races will record-breaking Hamilton win?

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Lewis Hamilton has become the most successful Formula 1 driver in the history of the sport in terms of race wins.

His victory in the Portuguese Grand Prix is the 92nd of his career, breaking the record previously held by Michael Schumacher.

He could have had many more wins already. Further victories surely lie ahead of him. But how many? What will F1’s record for most grand prix wins look like once Hamilton hangs up his helmet?

As things stand, Hamilton does not have a contract to continue racing in the 2021 F1 season. But a new deal with Mercedes is widely regarded as a formality, for obvious reasons. With the technical regulations changing little between this year and next, he can be very confident he will have a championship-contending car underneath him if he stays.

Following a year of disruption due to Covid-19, the 2021 F1 calendar is expected to resemble something more like a return to normality – at least, that’s what the championship promoters are aiming for. Expect north of 20 races.

Beyond that Hamilton’s future course is harder to predict. He has indicated he’s keen to stick around to drive the new generation of F1 cars which will arrive in 2022.

Meanwhile F1’s regulations are increasingly geared towards ending the domination Mercedes has enjoyed since 2014. A budget cap will arrive next year, car development will be handicapped based on championship positions and tighter aerodynamic rules should offer less scope for one team to gain an advantage.

How successful those rules are, and how long Hamilton stays around to compete at a time when his interest outside F1 increasingly consume his attention, are the key questions which will determine how many races he can win.

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I say

Since 2014 Hamilton has won at least nine races per season. Even on F1’s truncated 2020 schedule he’s already taken eight. The odds are therefore strong that he will reach a century next year.

I suspect – and sincerely hope – we will see a more competitive championship from 2022. But Hamilton is at the peak of his abilities at the moment and can expect to have the best engine behind him, irrespective of whether a freeze is introduced.

Therefore I suspect he will keep on winning, if not at quite the rate he can achieve now. I also doubt he’s interested in racing on into his forties as some of his rivals are.

Given his recent remarks, I suspect we’ll see Hamilton stick around for another three years, by the end of which he’ll have 120 wins to his name.

You say

How many races do you think Hamilton will have won by the end of his Formula 1 career? Cast your vote below and have your say in the comments.

How many races will Lewis Hamilton win by the end of his F1 career?

  • More than 150 (1%)
  • 126-150 (12%)
  • 101-125 (86%)
  • Fewer than 100 (2%)

Total Voters: 147

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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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56 comments on “How many F1 races will record-breaking Hamilton win?”

  1. As long as the British star, British team and major sponsor stick together.

  2. All of them.

    1. My words too stealer

  3. Before I read the “I say” section I was thinking – estimated 10 wins next year, then 17 more over the next two with a slightly more competitive field, putting his total at 119 and retiring at the end of 2023 with probably 10 championships. Great minds I guess ;) Hopefully 2022 onwards are at least competitive seasons with a real battle for drivers’ and constructors’ championships.

  4. Now tell me after today’s 92nd WIN.
    That LH isn’t the GOAT of the current F1 era.
    I’m not here to start a GOAT War.
    Every era of F1 has their own GOAT’s.

    1. Hard to argue that he’s been the best of his generation. The consistency and relentless high performance has been pretty remarkable. He hasn’t looked like fading and doesn’t look like he will any time soon. Valterri seems to be able to more or less match Lewis for outright pace on a Saturday but Lewis just has that something extra on a Sunday. The full package really.

      1. Bottas is the number two driver. Hamilton’s supposed to beat Bottas.

        At the end of 2016, Bottas was basically the weakest driver option they could have gone with.

      2. I think Bottas could totally win the championship with Mercedes (or any other car that is the best), if his teammate wasn’t Lewis Hamilton.
        …or Verstappen, Leclerc, Ricciardo, Alonso, or even Vettel or Sainz.
        Starting to wonder if he could even win against Norris, Gasly, Raikkonen.

    2. the GOAT of the current F1 era

      Wouldn’t that just make him the G or GOTCE?

      1. And Verstappen the GOMB,
        and Leclerc the GIR!

  5. Whatever records Hamilton sets, I hope they are never broken. Not because I like him, but because if we really end up with another team as dominant as Mercedes 2014-2021, then Formula 1 has failed as a sport.

    1. Amen to that.

    2. I really don’t think it will survive if that happens… I can’t be the only one hanging on to see what happens until this era of domination is over. If we head straight to another (without a good 5-6 years of competition in between at least), I’m sure I won’t be the only one leaving.

      1. To what was written about giving up on
        F1 because you are seeing the results of a complete team from the guy sweeping up the shop floors to the man at the top whose leadership continues to remain better than all who come. We are seeing the rarest of rare moments in sports where a team continues to be the generation of solving the challenges and winning often. Major rules changes meant to right the ship in Formula One meant the cars and their performance were replaced by new rules meant improve racing I.E. giving others a possible chance. Didn’t work so the cycle of dominance continued and fans don’t care for it. I say WHAT? What is wrong everybody. We bare witness to greatness so unseen at this level of technology. Year after year race after race. All teams race for second place. It’s the most they will get for the most part this year and next year again. Been saying it for years the dominance we see is POSITIVE and REMARKABLE to watch.
        2021 means slightly worse aero and pretty strong ground effects along with basically the same cars next year. I sense a repeat of this good dominance again. So enjoy it instead of wanting more bad racing again.

    3. Couldn’t have said it better myself @kingshark.

  6. I think Lewis’ next contract will be 2 years with an option to extend for an additional year, if he enjoys the new generation of cars.

    There’s no doubt Mercedes will dominate again in 2021, and I’d expect them to perform well in 2022 too. The bigger question is whether they’ll finally put Russell in the car, and if they do whether he’ll be closer to Hamilton than Bottas is.

    1. 2021 is just an extention of this years rules, so they can hand over the constructors and drivers WC trophies to them already i am afraid…

  7. I went for 101-125.

  8. A tricky question. I’m not sure how Bottas recovers from the trouncing he got today. This season has been his best, he’s been looking quicker in practice and even qualifying, but has had a mixture of errors and bad luck in recent races and seen the championship gap only widen. Today though he was blown out of the water with no excuses left. How does he convince himself he can win next year? I half expect a collapse in confidence. Hamilton, though, looks set to win 7 championships having beaten the record number of race wins. Will he still be highly motivated next year? If so he could surpass 10 wins. But say that happens and he wins a ridiculous number over a deflated Bottas. Paradoxically, that may be a motivation to leave Formula 1. If he does stay, though, he’ll be driving for what team, what challenges and what kind of car (Mercedes or otherwise)? Beating 100 wins looks a near certainty. But going beyond the 110-120 range far more uncertain. From what he said in interview today about the challenge ahead matching his values and what’s happening in the world, I think a switch to another (greener) formula is a high possibility, maybe as early as 2022.

    1. I think Bottas is a great driver, but his ultimate best takes him quite a bit of work and thus is close to a knife edge compared to what Hamilton can deliver to counter him (or others), so it is almost impossible to do it for long enough @david-br, which means he will have to accept that, or dig very very deep, take a Rosberg-2016 like all or nothing approach for next year, and just see where he can get, possibly as a last farewell.

      1. @bosyber Agreed, but I get the impression this is the year he’s already digging very deep.

      2. Mercedes should do (for our entertainment) like Red Bull is doing and test the various stable boys against Hamilton.

        At the same time RBR should do what Mercedes is doing, get a 2nd driver who’s deficit to their #1 driver is smaller than the deficit to the next fastest car.

        Or better, get Verstappen and Leclerc in the RBR in 2021 and do an all-or-nothing to upset Mercedes.

  9. I see Hamilton being around 110 to 115 by the end of 2021. The big question mark will be in 2022, with the new car. If Mercedes continues their domination, he could get 125+. I don’t see him getting to 150.

  10. All that the Mercedes allows. They have no merit, just compete against Bottas. Another thing would be if Verstappen, Leclerc or Ricciardo were in the Finn’s seat

  11. Next year if 20 races he should win 18 of them with a similar car advantage to this year which he will have.

    I can’t see any reason why Mercedes won’t be the best car in 2022. Hamilton won’t quit until he loses his car advantage or has a more challenging teammate.

    The records are becoming hollow at this point. Most of Hamilton’s wins and championships have been fought against the much lesser paid guy on the other side of the garage. He still has to go out there and beat his teammate, but it’s not the same as fighting against another team and driver intent on denying you the title.

    Put Verstappen in that Mercedes and he’d be beating Bottas by half a second in qualifying.

    Well done to Hamilton but all he’s proven this year is that he’s quicker than Bottas. It’s like slapping Schumacher on the back for beating Irvine. That doesn’t prove anything. It’s beating a Hakkinen in a faster McLaren that proves your great.

    They really need to do something to make this series competitive. Something drastic like they did after 2004 to stop Ferrari winning titles (even though they weren’t nearly as dominant as Mercedes).

    Just something to act as a disrupter. Change the tyres to disadvantage Mercedes.

    1. AllTheCoolNamesWereTaken
      25th October 2020, 16:04

      It’s beating a Hakkinen in a faster McLaren that proves your great.

      So, presumably beating a Vettel in a faster Ferrari in 2018 would count for something, then.

      Other than that, I mostly agree with you. The problem in F1 right now is two-fold: There is no inter-team challenge against Mercedes, and there is no intra-team challenge against Lewis.

      If there were a real inter-team challenge (if, say, Red Bull were able to consistently take the fight to Mercedes), then the lack of an intra-team challenge against Lewis would be less of an issue for us as spectators. And conversely, if there were a real intra-team challenge (if Lewis had a Rosberg 2.0 as his teammate, rather than a Finnish Barrichello), then the lack of an inter-team challenge would be less of an issue.

      The fact that the inter-team challenge and the intra-team challenge are both absent at the same time is what’s making the sport so desperately dull. Something does need to change. Either a new driver next to Lewis at Mercedes, or something to allow the other teams to close the gap to Mercedes. One or the other. Just, please, not the current state of things.

      1. So, presumably beating a Vettel in a faster Ferrari in 2018 would count for something, then.

        Toto and Hamilton have been very good at downplaying their superiority over the years.

        The only reason Vettel found himself ahead in the championship in 2018 was because of Mercedes team and Hamilton blunders.

        Mercedes only won 2 of the first 7 races despite having the best car.

        – Mercedes quickest in Australia. Fortunate VSC allowed Vettel to pit and come out in front of the Mercs

        – In Bahrain, Bottas was all over the back of Vettel at the end of the race. Vettel did well to hold off the much, much faster Merc.

        – In China Hamilton got outqualified by Bottas, with Bottas leading the race when safety car came out. Mercedes didn’t pit the RBRs did gifting them the win. Hamilton wasn’t good enough to beat Bottas and Mercedes blundered with their strategy.

        Mercedes were always quickest but Hamilton underperformed and team made blunders.

        Then in Spain when Mercedes and Hamilton were error free the stormed to a commanding victory.

    2. Hehehehe 🤣

    3. Put Verstappen in that Mercedes and he’d be beating Bottas by half a second in qualifying.

      Or not.

      Would Verstappen have shown the consistency and brainpower that Hamilton showed to win 2017 and 2018 against a faster Ferrari? Nah.

      Hamilton would have even won 2019 in a Ferrari. A Ferrari driver could/should have won Bahrain, Baku, Canada, Austria, Russia, Japan, Mexico. Plus the three they already won.

      While Verstappen squandered wins in Monaco, Hungary and Mexico. He’s just not steady and consistent enough. Panics too quickly when he’s under pressure, pulls dirty moves and too often suddenly can’t find a working setup. He might learn at some point. Apart from the dirty moves though, we’ve seen those don’t go away.

      1. Mercedes were much quicker in but as above they made a lot of blunders in 2018 to keep Vettel in it.

        Hamilton only won in Baku because Bottas got a late puncture, Hamilton was getting beaten by Bottas in Shanghai.

        Forget about beating Vettel he was struggling to beat his teammate back in early 2018.

    4. David Bondo/Oconomo, we all know you’ll be backtracking on those statements instantly if Verstappen were to sign for Mercedes – suddenly, the more dominant they can make that Mercedes, the better.

      1. Verstappen is entitled to the best car on the grid now for 7 seasons just to get even with Hamilton. He’s entitled to the most dominant car ever seen in the sport for 4 seasons just to get level with Hamilton.

  12. assuming 20 races in 2021, and 5 races left in this season…. 25

    after that the budget cap wil come into play, new regulations. Hamilton will want to stop on a high so doenst extend his contract beyond 2021…. that totals him at 92+25= 117

    1. @cdfemke I don’t see Hamilton winning the next 25 races in a row. He and the team are still capable of making errors, those cars aren’t 100% bullet proof either. Add in the occasional external factor and his win percentage will probably be closer to what it is this season, 66%. That would tack on another 16-17 wins through the end of 2021 leaving him with a total of 108-109.

  13. 4 more this year atleast. 12 next year. Around 16-17 more after that. So all in all around 120-130.

  14. I have a feeling he might pull a rosberg and quit. He has a lot on his mind and things to do besides racing. And he really doesn’t seem interested in racing per se as much as those things. It’s not like he has sniffed around lemans or Daytona or Indy. He can say he’ll leave as a legend. More than enough to not care about not “winning in red” or wherever people want to move the goalposts to.

  15. Who knows. Anyway, he needs to win AND get the fastest lap in the next 64 races to beat Fangio’s record of 17.57 points/race start (in the present scoring system), today he is at 15.53

    1. Maybe if he drives against a bunch of 40 to 50 year old drivers…

      1. @f1osaurus I like it! We’re talking Jenson Button (40) to David Coulthard (49) age range. Also Hamilton gets to drive Bottas’s car if his suffers a DNF, Fangio-style.

        1. @david-br Ha, ha, indeed. That would make it much more representative.

          Oh and they should smoke some cigarettes before the start, just to calm the nerves.

    2. In 1996 Olivier Panis entered just 1 Monaco Grand Prix. He won it and so has a 100% record in the principality for that year. You have to admit, he’s the GOAT with a win percentage like that!
      The point is that it was a different era for Fangio, who no doubt was a brilliant racing driver, but statistics only tell part of the story.

  16. F1 is getting way too boring. The drivers are just managing tires or fuel all the way during the race. Woo, so exciting… Watching an hypermiling race would be just as interesting. First we had four years of Red Bull dominance and right after that we’ve had 7 years of Merc dominance. F1 used to be exciting and interesting in the 90’s and 00’s.

    All the interesting innovations F1 teams come up with get banned by FIA at least from the next season onwards -> boring.
    DRS passes require no skill -> boring.
    No refueling -> can’t drive fast -> boring.
    Bad Pirelli tires -> can’t drive fast -> boring.

    I’m sick of one team and one driver winning almost every race. It’s been going on for the past 11 years now. If 2022 doesn’t level the playing field I’m done with F1. “Pinnacle of motorsport” my ass. More like “pinnacle of oppressive rules and destroying innovation”. Give teams more space in the rules so they can innovate and let them keep their innovations if they don’t break the rules. Let them advertise whatever they want, be it booze or tobacco so that they have more money to develop cars. F1 used to be exciting. I almost fell asleep multiple times during the last race. Watch a race from the late 90’s. Everyone is constantly driving at the limit of the grip they have, sliding around in slow-motion shots. 20 years ago every race lap was like a 2020 qualifying lap.

    1. No refueling -> can’t drive fast -> boring.
      Bad Pirelli tires -> can’t drive fast -> boring.

      So how do you explain all the track records getting broken every race? These are the fastest F1 cars we’ve ever seen.

      1. Track records getting broken is thanks to high downforce and the fact that the modern soft slick tires with tons of grip can last one or two quick laps, not because these are the fastest F1 cars in the history of F1.
        The record for the fastest average speed during a race is from 2003 in Monza. Modern F1 cars are slower during a race than they were 17 years ago. A 2003 Ferrari would literally beat a 2020 Mercedes in a race in Monza.

        1. Also, 2004 Monza fastest lap was 1:21.046 by Barrichello (current lap record),
          2020 Monza fastest lap was 1:22.746 by Hamilton, 1,7 seconds slower than a 2004 Ferrari.

          Highest top speeds are similar in modern F1 cars to what they were in 2005. In 2005 Montoya hit 372,6 km/h during testing (FIA sanctioned record) and in 2016 Bottas hit 372,5 km/h in his Williams during the Mexican GP.

        2. @kepe you’re being very selective with your choice though – whilst the 2003 Italian GP was very fast, none of the other races from 2003 had an average speed that would even make the top 100 races in terms of average race speed, so Monza 2003 is very much an outlier in terms of performance.

    2. @kepe

      we’ve had 7 years of Merc dominance

      Didn’t you see 2017 and 2018?

      1. Mercedes blunders kept Vettel in the championship. Mercedes were the best car by quite a margin. Just not most dominant car in history as they were 2014-16.

        1. Mercedes blunders? Lol. You are a hoot and a half

    3. As for Hamilton’s wins, he’ll probably dominate the 2021 season since literally nothing is changing for that season. So something like 15 wins from that. For 2022 I really hope something happens and Merc loses its dominant position, instead having to actually fight for wins against at least two other teams. 5 wins for Hamilton in 2022 and then he quits because he’s not dominating anymore. So under 120 wins in total. But that’s just something I’m hoping.
      Reality will probably be that Merc keeps dominating in 2022 and onwards and Hamilton keeps driving as long as he’s able to win most of the races and he will rack up over 160 wins. At that point everyone is sick and tired of F1 and the series gets dumped for something more interesting.

  17. Really depends on the level of dominant of mercedes and how long he stays, I honestly hope he gets a competitive challenge in terms of cars before he leaves cause he isn’t that god many people make him up to be just cause of his inflated numbers by the car, but assuming he makes a last contract, 105-120 based on the level of dominance of the car sounds realistic.

  18. i hope less than all the articles that have been published recently around his records. so sad that in today’s world you need to focus on articles that trigger so much mixed emotions – people literally attacking each other just for posting an opinion. that’s not cool.
    i don’t care how many more he wins, the bread won’t be cheaper because of it, but F1 will remain rather predictable and to some degree boring. Thank God for all the midfield battles. It literally hurts to see Bottas being destroyed in nearly every race, but if that’s what he wants so be it…

  19. @david Bondo so verstappen is entitled to be in a merc… Is that not white privilege i hear? Hehehe…

  20. I don’t see how you can say the records are becoming hollow. You act as if Schumacher’s 91 wins mean more. Schumacher had similarly dominant periods with subordinate teammates during all seven of his championship campaigns. He won the title with SIX races to go in 2002. During the 2002 season, his main rivals, McLaren, had 5 or so DNF/failures on the warm up lap. The third best team, Williams, with Montoya and Ralf (good drivers, but not elite talents), had poor reliability and couldn’t match the Ferrari for pace. And his inner team battle with Barrichello was nonexistent (see Austria 2002). This is the way Formula 1 has always been.

    Ascari ran against a field of Formula 2 cars in 1952. Fangio almost always had the best car and subservient teammates. In 1955 Fangio’s teammate, Sterling Moss, was his number two driver. In 1956 Fangio won the title only because Peter Collins (teammate/title rival) gave him his car at Monza, so that he could share the 2nd place points and claim the title. In 1957 Jean Behra (who went winless throughout his career) was Fangio’s teammate. Fangio’s career was shorter, so it doesn’t seem like he enjoyed the same advantages as Lewis or Schumacher, but if you look closely…he won 24 of 51 races and 5 of 7 titles in the 1950’s. F1 has always been this way.

    The best car almost always wins the title, the best drivers usually end up in the best cars…and the best drivers usually don’t have any inner team battles. The problem is we look at the past with nostalgia and forget what actually took place. I can understand being frustrated by the lack of competition these days, but to say the records are hollow is ridiculous.
    Hamilton has proven his talent from day one. He beat Alonso as rookie (when Raikkonen, Button and Massa couldn’t even get close). He was 1 point away from titles in his rookie and sophomore seasons. He is the last driver to win a title without his team taking the constructors championship (and one of only a few drivers who can claim they’ve done that). He’s beaten his 3 WDC championship teammates in the point standings 6 out 8 seasons. He fought for the title in 2010 and 2012 in a McLaren that wasn’t consistently the best car on the grid. He’s beaten Vettel in a close fight in both 2017 and 2018. As a driver he’s always raced clean…he’s amazing in the wet, in qualifying, race pace, late braking, and consistency.

    I think he has is just as deserving of his numbers as any other F1 legend.

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