Humans > Legend

Lewis Hamilton is officially a 5-time Formula 1 champion

He is now just 2 titles behind Michael Schumacher’s record

Dude is now on level with Juan Manuel Fangio. PHOTO FROM MERCEDES F1

British racing driver Lewis Hamilton has equaled the five-title haul of the great Juan Manuel Fangio by finally securing his fifth Formula 1 drivers’ championship at yesterday’s Mexican Grand Prix. Entering the race, Hamilton needed only to finish in seventh place to wrap up the championship (regardless of whether rival Sebastian Vettel of Ferrari won the race or not). In the end, Hamilton finished just outside of the podium in fourth place after having started third on the grid behind the two Red Bull drivers. Only the legendary Michael Schumacher has won more titles with seven, a tally that is now very much within Hamilton’s reach.

Hamilton can do magic with his car. And donuts. PHOTOS FROM MERCEDES F1

Taking into account the race results in Mexico, Hamilton now has 358 points to Vettel’s 294. With just two races remaining (Brazil and Abu Dhabi) and a maximum 50 points (25 per race) up for grabs, Hamilton’s 64-point lead is officially unassailable. Vettel was gracious enough in defeat, walking up to Hamilton and congratulating his nemesis in front of their cheering fans.

‘Thanks, Seb, for all your stupid mistakes this year.’ PHOTO FROM MERCEDES F1

Hamilton first joined F1 in 2007 as a rookie driver for McLaren alongside the veteran (and two-time champion) Fernando Alonso. Hamilton was so good he matched his accomplished teammate point for point—they both finished the season with 109 points each, with neither one getting the overall trophy. Hamilton won his first title the following season, in 2008, with McLaren.

Subsequent unfruitful years at McLaren forced him to move to Mercedes F1 in 2013, promptly bagging the title in 2014. He successfully defended his title in 2015, before seeing it change hands in favor of teammate Nico Rosberg. Rosberg was so spent stealing the championship from Hamilton that he announced his retirement right after accomplishing what many had thought to be an impossible task. Hamilton won it all again in 2017 and then served up more of the same this year.

“Honestly, it’s very hard to realize it at the moment,” the newly crowned champion said. “It’s something I dreamed of, but I never in a million years thought I’d be standing here today as a five-time world champion. I never knew that was going to happen, and I am just so grateful to everyone who has helped me be here.”

Can the latest milestone finally convince Hamilton’s haters of his greatness? Let’s hope so. PHOTO FROM MERCEDES F1

Well, maybe Lewis should send his teammate Valtteri Bottas a nice little present for the latter’s season-long (servitude) support. A brand-new Mercedes-AMG GT S, perhaps?

Vernon B. Sarne

Vernon is the founder and editor-in-chief of VISOR. He has been an automotive journalist since July 1995. He became one by serendipity, walking into the office of a small publishing company and applying for a position he had no idea was for a local car magazine. God has watched over him throughout his humble journey. He writes the ‘Spoiler’ column.