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We review Lewis Hamilton’s five world championships

| 31.10.2018

Lewis Hamilton is a five-time Formula One world champion following his fourth place finish in Sunday’s Mexican Grand Prix.

The Mercedes ace needed just five points to seal the championship, and he now sits alongside Juan Manuel Fangio on five world titles.

Only Michael Schumacher is ahead of Hamilton now, with the great German on seven.

Hamilton says this season’s championship is his best yet. So how does it compare to his other four?


Hamilton’s first world title came in just his second season of Formula One.

Driving for McLaren, he famously overtook Timo Glock in the final corner of the last lap in Brazil to win the championship by one point from Felipe Massa.

He didn’t always have the fastest car either, with his McLaren often second-best to Ferrari.

2008-era Hamilton still had lessons to learn, too.  He lost valuable points by colliding with Fernando Alonso in Bahrain, before ramming into the back of Kimi Raikkonen in the pit-lane in Canada.

But there were moments of pure genius from Hamilton during the campaign, winning in the rain at both Monaco and Silverstone.

Lewis Hamilton


Hamilton had to wait six years for his second world title, and it only came after he left McLaren to join Mercedes.

The timing was perfect, and Hamilton won 11 races in 2014 to win his second championship.

His only rival was team-mate Nico Rosberg, and the German lead the standings by 29 points after round 12 in Belgium.

But as is now customary, Hamilton upped his game when it mattered. He won six of the final seven races to leave Rosberg in his wake and seal a second world title in style.

Lewis Hamilton


Hamilton’s third title came just a year later, and it was arguably his most straight-forward campaign.

Mercedes’ prowess again pitched Hamilton and Rosberg into a title duel, but it was hugely one-sided.

Hamilton dominated the campaign, winning 10 of the first 16 races, while finishing off the podium only twice all year.

The championship was won in America, when Hamilton pressurised Rosberg into a late-race off, handing Lewis the race win and the title.

Lewis Hamilton


After Rosberg upped his game to snatch the 2016 championship, he promptly retired.

But if anyone thought Hamilton would have it easy, they hadn’t counted on a Ferrari renaissance.

The Scuderia enjoyed their best season in years, and Vettel and Hamilton were evenly matched in the first half of the campaign.

But Hamilton again raised the bar in the second half of the year with five wins in six races.

Vettel crumbled under the pressure, making a costly error in Singapore, while a mechanical retirement in Japan allowed Hamilton to win his fourth title in Mexico with two races to spare.

Lewis Hamilton


This year’s battle followed a similar pattern to 2017. Hamilton started the year somewhat slowly, while Ferrari made the early running.

But the tide began to turn in Germany, where Vettel slid out of the lead during a rain shower, and Hamilton came through from 14th on the grid to win.

That sparked a scintillating run of six wins in seven races for Hamilton, who again managed to reach new heights in the crux of a title battle.

On several occasions he defeated what many believed to be a substantially faster Ferrari, while his drive in Singapore has already entered the stuff of legend.

And for the second year in a row, Vettel had no reply. The German followed his error at Hockenheim with further spins in Italy, Japan and America.

As Hamilton grew, Vettel wilted and for the second year in a row the Englishman wrapped up the title in Mexico with two races to go.

Lewis Hamilton



Richard Marsh

Richard loves his sport, especially if it involves the sound of tyres screaming around a race track. He's not fussy though and his '90s Premier League nostalgia and knowledge of team nicknames is tough to match.