Formula 1 is back on track for the penultimate round of the season already assigned. It does so in Brazil, in a land that has awarded several companies … and world titles to the history of this sport.
At Interlagos, despite the games being made, there are those who still have something to prove. Or rather, to be demonstrated. There are those who must make Mexico an isolated case of non-performance, like the Ferrari.
There are those who come to score a much-desired victory of the season, like Lewis. Or who comes to devour a few points in the constructors’ standings and grab a second position, like the Mercedes.
This is what Formula 1 promises to show us in Brazil, the land of the great conquerors, the land of Ayrtonfrom Vettel, of the tears of Mass and the joy of Lewis. The land of Button and his triumph sung to the notes of Queen, the land of Kimi in the year when the world of engines was the triumph of red, from Borgo Panigale to Maranello.
Data in hand, however, let’s look at the present and discover together some curiosities that will accompany us until the penultimate Grand Prix of the season starts.
– 15 of the last 17 Brazilian GP winners started from the front row of the grid (eight of them from pole position). The last two to do so were Lewis Hamilton in the last edition (10th), and Kimi Raikkonen, 3rd in 2007 when he won the F1 World Championship.
– With the victory in Mexico, Max Verstappen has 416 points, the highest number of points in a single year in Formula 1, surpassing Lewis Hamilton’s 413 in 2019.
– Red Bull has 696 points. For the Austrian team this is the best year in Formula 1 and the fifth highest in a single season. If they take 70 of the remaining 103 points (win, second place and fastest lap and the first two positions in the Sprint Race in Brazil), they will overtake Mercedes as the team with the most points in a single year (765 in 2016). Not bad…
– Carlos Sainz is the only current driver to have made the Top 10 in all completed Formula 1 races this season.
– Ferrari is missing a pole position to break its best record in a single Formula 1 season (currently 12, as many as it had in 2004) and could reach Brazil’s second record of points in a single year in the competition (currently 487 after 571 in 2018, 522 in 2017 and 504 in 2019).
– Lewis Hamilton could match Michael Schumacher as the driver with the most wins at Interlagos (3 for the British and 4 for the German) and could be the driver with the most pole positions in this circuit (currently 3, as many as Rubens Barrichello, Felipe Massa, Mika Hakkinen and Ayrton Senna). Of course, with the W13 it is a difficult undertaking, but beware of the crazy weather: and then, as the history of this track teaches, never say never.
– George Russell scored four fastest laps, three of which in 2022. The young Mercedes driver scored the last two in Austin and Mexico. In Brazil, he could become the 33rd driver to achieve three consecutive fastest laps and the second to do so for Mercedes after Lewis Hamilton between Italy and Japan in 2014 (3). It would also be the 100th fastest lap for the German team in its Formula 1 history.
– We come to the sore point of the career of Fernando Alonso. No, it’s not his opportunities that he lost, but his withdrawals. He has had to leave the race prematurely in three of his last five Formula 1 races, just one less than in his previous 37 races for Alpine. The Spaniard has collected 74 retirements in his career, the 18th highest number of retirements in the competition (74 also for Giancarlo Fisichella).
– L’Aston Martin is the fourth team with the highest number of laps completed in Formula 1 in 2022 (2184), after McLaren (2282), Mercedes (2231) and Red Bull (2196). Lance Stroll (1105), is the eighth driver with the most laps completed this season in the competition.
– Valtteri Bottas, thanks to starting from sixth place in Mexico, he equaled his second best position on the grid of the season (6th in Bahrain) after the 5th position in Miami. The Finn is the first Alfa Romeo driver to start in the top six in more than 3 races in a single year since Kimi Raikkonen in 2016.
It will be a long weekend, but certainly exciting. Will Ferrari be able to stop Red Bull’s consecutive number of victories? Most importantly, will honorary citizen Lewis Hamilton be able to climb the top step… at least once?