Williams’ longest-ever point-less run reaches 30 races in a row

2021 Portuguese Grand Prix stats and facts

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Lewis Hamilton came close to setting the 100th pole position of his career last weekend. How close? He was just seven-thousandths of a second away.

Valtteri Bottas beat him to pole by the closest margin since the 2019 British Grand Prix, when the pair also shared the front row in the same order, separated by just 0.006s. This was the 17th pole of Bottas’ career, putting him level with Jackie Stewart.

Bottas also took the 17th fastest lap of his career yesterday, giving him the same number as Rubens Barrichello. Max Verstappen missed out on his 11th due to a track limits infringement.

Hamilton will therefore have to wait at least another week for his 100th pole position. But he moved closer to a century of victories with his 97th on Sunday, at the track where he broke Michael Schumacher’s former wins record last year.

This podium trio has become a familiar sight
Hamilton, Verstappen and Bottas shared the podium for the 15th time. This set a new record for the most times the same three drivers have occupied the rostrum positions, beating the 14 shared by Hamilton, Sebastian Vettel and Nico Rosberg.

Sergio Perez remains yet to score his first podium finish for Red Bull, having taken fourth in yesterday’s race. He did lead a race in a Red Bull for the first time – the seventh grand prix he has led – heading the field for 13 laps.

He was followed home by Lando Norris, who for the fourth race in a row was the first driver home not in a Mercedes or a Red Bull. This consistency has put him third in the championship at this early stage, though it’s hard to imagine he’ll still be ahead of Bottas and Perez when the season ends.

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Alpine had by far their best weekend of their short, three-race history. Sixth on the grid for Esteban Ocon and seventh at the chequered flag, backed up by Fernando Alonso in eighth, were high watermarks for the former Renault squad, which achieved three podiums last year.

Norris is in a superb run of form
Two of those were score by Daniel Ricciardo, who has not yet clicked with his McLaren. He went out in Q1 and started 16th, his worst grid position since Suzuka 2019. He recovered to ninth in the race, however.

As Carlos Sainz Jnr came in 11th for Ferrari, that means McLaren is now the only team to have finished in the points with both cars at every race so far this year. It was a good weekend for them all round – Patricio O’Ward gave their IndyCar sibling McLaren SP their first IndyCar victory since Johnny Rutherford at Atlanta in 1979.

Alfa Romeo’s efforts to score points were thwarted on and off the track. Their attempt to have Kimi Raikkonen’s Emilia-Romagna Grand Prix penalty overturned failed, and in the race he retired after colliding with his team mate. Antonio Giovinazzi reached the finish, but 12th place leaves their score at zero.

George Russell, Williams, Autodromo do Algarve, 2021
Russell narrowly missed Q3 but was nowhere near the points
The same goes for Haas, though Mick Schumacher’s late pass on Nicholas Latifi meant they were at least classified ahead of a running rival for the first time this year.

George Russell’s 11th on the grid gave Williams temporary cheer. It matched his starting position from last year’s Styrian Grand Prix, but unlike that was not aided by any penalties.

But he sank to 16th at the chequered flag. Illustrating the scale of difference between Williams’ performance in qualifying and the race, Russell was just 0.05s from reaching Q3 on Saturday, but 73 seconds away from finishing in the points on Sunday. Williams are already on their longest-ever point-less run, and yesterday’s result extended that to 30 races in a row.

There is plenty of time for them to end that streak. Out of this year’s 23 rounds, there are still 20 races left to run. Or make that 23, since the addition of a trio of Sprint Qualifying races will create three more points-scoring opportunities.

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

2021 Portuguese Grand Prix

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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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18 comments on “Williams’ longest-ever point-less run reaches 30 races in a row”

  1. Or make that 23, since the addition of a trio of Sprint Qualifying races will create three more points-scoring opportunities.

    Of course Williams is going to win some Sprint race! *facepalm*

    Out of 4 finishing cars the first 3 will not be a Williams.

    1. someone or something
      3rd May 2021, 13:30

      Your comment made me cringe.

    2. Whilst your comment is likely to be true, it is not certain. Literally anything can happen on a race weekend. Who knows, a big pile up (god forbid!) could result in 12 cars out of the race. Would you bet your house on a Williams not being in the top 4?

  2. Both Algarve races featured only a single DNF.

    VER and GAS QLF positions were the same for both Portuguese GPs, while in the races, besides HAM winning, RIC finished 9th on both occasions.

    Last season, the 4th placed driver was the last on the lead lap at the chequered flag. 11th this time around.

    The 4th successive win for HAM when starting 2nd. Also, his 150th points-scoring race for Mercedes. He’s only failed at scoring nine times since joining the team.

    VER’s best start to a season with a win and two 2nd places.

    LEC has finished in the top six in every 2021 race so far.

    ALO’s best result since the 2018 Singapore GP.

    1. someone or something
      3rd May 2021, 15:09

      @jerejj

      Last season, the 4th placed driver was the last on the lead lap at the chequered flag. 11th this time around.

      Probably my favourite fact about this weekend. Even if you take into account that this year’s race was essentially 6 laps shorter due to the early Safety Car, it’s good to see that the field has become so much closer.

      1. And importantly, the safety car was at the beginning of the race, meaning there wasn’t a big timing reset towards the end of the grand prix.

  3. This would not be if Russell hadn’t fluffed it twice in imola last year and this year.

    1. Never forget the angry outburst. That made me turn my back on him.

        1. You know what? I can’t trust George anymore. First Max in 2018, now George this year.

  4. Nikita Mazepin still has a mathematical chance of becoming World Champion this year.

    1. Vettel has scored as many points in the last 6 races as has Mazepin in his 3 races.

  5. nikita mazepin held fastest lap for a lap.

    nikita mazepin challenged for the lead.

    1. When did he challenge for the lead?

      1. someone or something
        3rd May 2021, 21:47

        @esploratore
        He showed some solid defensive driving against Pérez. :P

  6. Mercedes’ 128th pole as a constructor – equals Williams, only trails McLaren (155) and Ferrari (228).

    In the last 5 races Gasly has started 5th twice and 9th three times.

    Q1 saw both a McLaren and Stroll eliminated – in both cases Brazil 2019 was the last time it happened.

    One of 4 tracks at which Hamilton has a 100% win record – the others being Indianapolis, Paul Ricard, and Mugello.

    Sainz’s starting positions this year: 8-11-5. His finishing positions: 8-5-11.

    Raikkonen’s first DNF since Austria 2020. Ricciardo (whose last DNF was also Austria 2020) now has the outright longest uninterrupted finishing streak (19 races).

    Thanks to statsf1 and the official F1 site for some of these.

    1. The 128 Merc poles is a bit disgusting.

      If you take out the 8 they had in 1954-55; and the 3 this year because it’s hard to use 3/23rds of a season in an average, that leaves them with 117. From 2012-2020 is 9 seasons, or 13 poles per year.

      But it’s worse that that. Because 2012 and 2013 were pre-hybrid era, and if you just focused on the current era thats 117 minus 1 (2012) and minus 7 (2013) that’s 109 in 7 seasons, or more than 15.5 poles per season on average. I know some seasons have been closer and others less so, and the average doesn’t tell the whole tale. But it tells a whole lot.

      I was excited when Merc did well in 2014, astonished by their pace. And understood that 2015 and 2016 might also be foregone conclusions given how far ahead they were. But we are now in the 5th season beyond that and it’s well-past annoying.

      For anyone who says it’s sour grapes to whine about the best team dominating, we’re well past that now. We are in season 8 of dominance so profound that all the individual records are gone and the team ones are not far behind. It’s beyond the part where engineering excellence is interesting, imo.

  7. So what happened at Imola if said in a short summary? “Green what is your problem, me say alone ramp”.

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