It was back to the top step of the podium for Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes-AMG Petronas Motorsport in China – and now we’re back with all the best facts and figures you can sink your teeth into from Shanghai!
Shanghai Milestones I
The Shanghai International Circuit has been a happy hunting ground for Lewis Hamilton over the years – this being his fifth victory from 11 attempts. It’s not been a bad track for Mercedes-Benz AMG Petronas Motorsport either, with five wins from the last six races in Shanghai, including four in a row.
Success in Shanghai marked another special milestone in Lewis’ Formula One career, as he became just the second driver in history after Michael Schumacher to have five wins on three or more circuits. The Shanghai International Circuit now joins Montreal’s Circuit Gilles Villeneuve and Budapest’s Hungaroring on the list of tracks dominated by the Brit in recent years.
Career victory number 54, a 32nd fastest lap (set on lap 44, of course!), leading every lap, plus a 63rd pole on combined to give Lewis his third career Grand Slam in F1! He joins fellow triple World Champion Nelson Piquet in eighth on the all-time Grand Slam list. Only one driver on the current grid can boast more Grand Slams and that’s Sebastian Vettel, with four. Both drivers have a way to go still to match the great Jim Clark’s record of eight – but are marching on that path.
In the drivers’ standings, the current front-running pair are even more closely matched, tied on 43 points in P1. You have to go back to 2012 for the last time two drivers shared the top spot – Sebastian and Fernando Alonso level pegging after the Spanish Grand Prix that year. It’s tight too at the top of the Constructors’, with just a point between the Silver Arrows and Ferrari – 66 points to 65.
Shanghai Milestones II
Saturday was also a big day for Lewis and the team. Lewis’ sixth pole in Shanghai and second of the 2017 season and sixth in succession was also the 75th for the Silver Arrows in Formula One and the team’s 17th consecutive P1 grid slot. Lewis’s 1:31.678 pole lap was 3.72s quicker than the 2016 pole position time of former team-mate Nico Rosberg and 0.56 seconds faster than Michael Schumacher’s all-time circuit record from 2004.
In a measure of just how tight the margins are in the fight for top spot in Formula 1 this year, Valtteri missed out on the front row to Sebastian Vettel by just a thousandth of a second – equivalent to a mere 5.91cm!
On a final note… the 2017 Chinese Grand Prix marked the 150th F1start for the Mercedes-Benz Silver Arrows. And what better way to mark that momentous milestone than with the team’s 65th win.
Next stop on our stat-tastic world tour, it’s the Bahrain International Circuit. Let’s see what this year’s first desert duel brings…