Nine drivers have a 100% finish record in Abu Dhabi, one driver has gone seven seasons without being beaten by a team-mate in qualifying here and just one driver has a 100% Q3 appearance rate at the track. Here’s everything you need to know about each driver’s history at the Yas Marina Circuit!
🇬🇧 Lewis Hamilton
From the nine Abu Dhabi Grands Prix held so far, Lewis Hamilton has featured on the podium in six of them. The only times he hasn’t was with a seventh place finish in 2013 and two DNFs in 2009 and 2012. He’s won here three times – once with McLaren in 2011 and twice with Mercedes in 2014 and 2016. Hamilton finished in the top two here in all of the last four seasons. He’s qualified on pole at the Yas Marina track three times, and has lined up on the front row seven times. 2013 is the only time he’s lost a position from his starting slot here. He has a 100% Q3 appearance record at the track, but has beaten his team-mate in qualifying only once in the past five seasons (in 2016).
🇫🇮 Valtteri Bottas
Abu Dhabi is the scene of Valtteri Bottas’ most recent F1 win, which came at the end of last season. Aside from last year’s victory, Bottas also finished on the podium here with Williams in 2014. His two podium finishes are the only times he’s scored points here, finishing down in fifteenth and thirteenth in 2013 and 2015 respectively, and retiring from the 2016 event. Bottas qualified on pole here last year, achieving his only front row start so far at the Yas Marina Circuit. He’s never gained a position from his starting place in a race here. From his five appearances, the Finn has reached Q3 three times and has also beaten his team-mate in qualifying three times.
🇩🇪 Sebastian Vettel
Just like Lewis Hamilton, Sebastian Vettel has won here three times and visited the podium six times. He’s yet to win here with Ferrari, but has finished third in each of the last two seasons. The only time Vettel has failed to score at the track was in 2011, when he was eliminated from the race on the first lap. Vettel has taken pole here twice and has started from the front row four times, but is yet to do so with Ferrari. He’s reached Q3 in every season except 2015, where he was eliminated in Q1. He was also disqualified from the qualifying result in 2012 for failing to have enough fuel in his car to make it back to the pits. Last season marked the first time Vettel had beaten a team-mate in qualifying at the Yas Marina track since 2011. Vettel has never lost a position from his starting place here and made up a best of 21 positions in the 2012 race after starting from the back of the grid.
🇫🇮 Kimi Raikkonen
2009 and 2013 are the only times from his seven appearances at the track that Kimi Raikkonen has failed to score points. He won here in 2012, and finished on the podium in 2015. He also took his best qualifying result here in 2015, lining up third on the grid. Last year was the first time Raikkonen has been beaten by a team-mate at the track on pure pace. He’s reached Q3 every time he’s been in attendance at Abu Dhabi, except in 2009.
🇦🇺 Daniel Ricciardo
Daniel Ricciardo is yet to finish on the podium at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix. He’s finished in the points four times from his seven appearances here, with a best of fourth in 2014. He’s also recorded two DNFs, in 2011 and 2017. Ricciardo’s best qualifying at the track is third in 2016, and he’s reached Q3 in every season since 2013. He has never been beaten by a team-mate in qualifying at the circuit.
🇳🇱 Max Verstappen
Max Verstappen has finished in the top five on each of his last two Abu Dhabi Grand Prix appearances. His debut showing here, in 2015 when he finished sixteenth, is the only time he’s failed to score. Verstappen has a 100% finish record at the track. He’s qualified in sixth in each of the last two seasons here, but is yet to beat a team-mate on a Saturday at the circuit.
🇲🇽 Sergio Perez
Sergio Perez has scored on every visit to Abu Dhabi since 2013, with a best finish of fifth in 2015. He’s qualified eighth in each of the last two seasons, and has a best grid slot of fourth in 2015. 2016 is the only time in his seven appearances that the Mexican has been beaten by a team-mate in qualifying.
🇫🇷 Esteban Ocon
From his two visits to the Yas Marina Island, Esteban Ocon is yet to lose a position from his starting place in the race. Last year, he reached Q3, qualifying in ninth and finishing eighth. The Frenchman is yet to beat a team-mate in qualifying at the circuit.
🇨🇦 Lance Stroll
On his first Abu Dhabi Grand Prix appearance last year, Lance Stroll reached Q2, failing to beat his team-mate and qualifying in fifteenth. In the race he lost three positions, finishing eighteenth and last of the cars running at the end of the race.
🇷🇺 Sergey Sirotkin
Sergey Sirotkin hasn’t raced in Abu Dhabi in F1 before, but has raced at the Yas Marina Circuit in GP2. His best result here came in 2016, when he finished third in the Sprint Race.
🇩🇪 Nico Hulkenberg
Nico Hulkenberg has scored at all of the last four Abu Dhabi Grands Prix, finishing either sixth or seventh in all of them. His only DNF here came in 2012. Hulkenberg has qualified in seventh for all of the last three races at this track, and hasn’t lost any positions from his starting place in all of those races. He’s reached Q3 on five of his seven Yas Marina appearances, including in every season since 2015. In the past six years, the German has been out-qualified by his team-mate only twice at the circuit.
🇪🇸 Carlos Sainz
Carlos Sainz hasn’t finished a race at Yas Marina since 2015. In his debut season, he recorded an eleventh place finish, but has since suffered misfortune, retiring in both 2016 and 2017. 2015 is the only time he’s beaten a team-mate in qualifying here, and also the only time he’s reached Q3 at the track.
🇫🇷 Pierre Gasly
Pierre Gasly finished sixteenth on his first Abu Dhabi Grand Prix appearance in 2017. He qualified seventeenth, beating his team-mate.
🇳🇿 Brendon Hartley
Brendon Hartley finished ahead of his team-mate at last year’s season-ending race. Qualifying last, the New Zealander made up five places in the Grand Prix to finish fifteenth.
🇫🇷 Romain Grosjean
The 2012 race at this track is the only time Romain Grosjean has failed to finish the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix. From his seven appearances, Grosjean has scored only twice, with his best finish being fourth place in 2013. He’s yet to score here with Haas. His best qualifying at Yas Marina is seventeenth, which occurred in 2013. The Frenchman has beaten his team-mate on pure pace alone only once at this circuit, in 2014. He hasn’t reached Q3 since then at this circuit. Grosjean has never lost a position from his starting place in an Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.
🇩🇰 Kevin Magnussen
Kevin Magnussen is yet to score a point at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix. The closest he came to doing so was on his first attempt, in his final race start with McLaren in 2014, when he finished eleventh. Since then, he retired from the race in 2016 and finished thirteenth in 2017. His best qualifying here is also eleventh, also in 2014, meaning he has never reached Q3 here before. Last year was the first time Magnussen beat his team mate in qualifying at the Yas Marina circuit.
🇪🇸 Fernando Alonso
The Abu Dhabi Grand Prix will mark Fernando Alonso’s final race in the sport. It’s a track at which he’s never won, but did finish runner up at in 2011 and 2012. He’s scored points in both of the last two seasons here and has never failed to reach the finish line. His best qualifying performance at the Yas Marina track came in 2010, when he lined up third on the grid. From his nine appearances, the Spaniard has reached Q3 five times and out-qualified his team-mate six times.
🇧🇪 Stoffel Vandoorne
On his first appearance at the Yas Marina Circuit last year, Stoffel Vandoorne finished in twelfth. He qualified in thirteenth, and was eliminated in Q2.
🇸🇪 Marcus Ericsson
Marcus Ericsson has never failed to finish an Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, but is yet to score a point at the track. He has a best qualifying performance of eighteenth, from 2015, and has never progressed past Q1 on all three appearances. He’s never beaten a team-mate in qualifying here.
🇲🇨 Charles Leclerc
While Charles Leclerc has no past F1 race experience at the Yas Marina Circuit, he has raced here in both GP3 and F2 in recent years. Last year, he took podium finishes in both the Feature and Sprint races on his last F2 appearances, standing on the top step of the podium after the Sprint race.
After graduating from the University of Hull in 2015 with a First Class honours degree in English Language and Literature, Nicky Haldenby, a lifelong fan of Formula 1, founded the Lights Out F1 Blog in 2016. Now in its fifth season, the blog has become a firm fan-favourite, delving deep into the sport’s history books and lifting the cover on unusual F1 statistics. Nicky also writes at F1Destinations and GPDestinations. In 2017 and 2018, he wrote for Badger GP. Nicky is also the host of the F1 Rewind Podcast and can be heard as the resident stats man on the 2 Soft Compounds Podcast.