Mercedes stand on the brink of historic F1 domination, Bottas does something a driver hasn’t done at Catalunya since 1994 and Raikkonen does something he hasn’t done in almost five years. Here are all the facts and statistics from the 2019 Spanish Grand Prix weekend!
Mercedes took their fifth consecutive 1-2 finish of the 2019 season at the Spanish Grand Prix. It’s the third time they have taken five consecutive 1-2 finishes, having previously done so from Malaysia to Monaco 2014 and from USA 2015 to Australia 2016. They have now achieved the feat more times than Ferrari, and stand on the brink of a historic sixth consecutive 1-2 finish in Monaco. No team has ever finished first and second in six consecutive races before in Formula 1 history.
Mercedes topped every practice session, all three parts of qualifying and set the fastest lap of the race. It’s the second time a team has done that this year, with Ferrari also doing the same in Bahrain (though they didn’t win the race). The last time Mercedes dominated a weekend to such an extent was at the 2018 French Grand Prix.
Lewis Hamilton recorded his 76th Grand Prix victory and his fourth win at the Spanish Grand Prix. It was his third win of the 2019 season as well as his third consecutive win at the Catalunya circuit. He becomes the third driver to take three consecutive wins at the track, alongside Mika Hakkinen and Michael Schumacher, and the first to do so since Schumacher won four races in a row here between 2001 and 2004. It was Hamilton’s 139th podium finish and his eighth top three result at Catalunya.
For the first time in his career, Lewis Hamilton led every lap of the Spanish Grand Prix from start to finish.
Lewis Hamilton set the fastest lap of the race for the first time in the 2019 season, making the 2019 Spanish Grand Prix the first time that Hamilton has taken 26 points away from a Grand Prix. The only time he has scored more than that in a single race was at the 2014 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, where he took 50 points for his victory – a result of double points being awarded for the race. Hamilton’s fastest lap time was 0.051 seconds shy of Daniel Ricciardo’s lap record, set at the 2018 Spanish Grand Prix. It’s the 42nd time Hamilton has set the fastest lap of a race in his career.
With his win, Lewis Hamilton ensured British drivers equalled German drivers for the most wins at the Catalunya track, with the two nations now tied on eight wins apiece. The result also saw British drivers equal German drivers for the most podium finishes at the track.
Valtteri Bottas took his second podium finish at the Spanish Grand Prix, and the tenth podium finish for a Finnish driver at the Catalunya circuit. It was the 35th podium finish of his career, equalling the tallies of Juan Manuel Fangio and Emerson Fittipaldi.
Curiously, Valtteri Bottas became the first polesitter to finish second in the Spanish Grand Prix since Michael Schumacher in 1994. Just like Bottas, Schumacher also lost the race to the man who started second on the grid.
Mercedes have led the Constructors’ Championship after the Spanish Grand Prix in every year since 2014. 2019 marks their second largest lead at this point in the season since the dawn of the V6 hybrid era. They’re currently 96 points ahead of their nearest rivals. In 2014, they were 113 points ahead.
Over the weekend, Lewis Hamilton took Sebastian Vettel’s record of most points scored at the Catalunya circuit, while he also became the driver to have led the second-most laps at the track. Impressively, he’s still 172 laps away from Michael Schumacher’s record!
Mercedes won for the fifth time in six years at the Spanish Grand Prix, and took their fourth 1-2 victory at the circuit during that period too. It was their 92nd win – 49 of those have been 1-2 finishes.
BOTTAS BREAKS BARCELONA RECORD
On Saturday, Valtteri Bottas broke the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya track record with his pole lap. Impressively, the new fastest time on this layout of the track was only 0.722 seconds slower than the fastest time on the circuit before the chicane at the final corner was added.
Bottas recorded his ninth pole position in Formula 1, and became the fifteenth different driver to take pole at the Catalunya track. It was the sixth pole for a Finnish driver here. Bottas also claimed a third consecutive pole position for the first time in his career, and beat Lewis Hamilton in qualifying for the Spanish Grand Prix for the first time during their tenure as team-mates. Bottas moves up to 34th in the all-time list of drivers with the most pole positions. He’s now just one pole behind Jochen Rindt.
With a pole margin of 0.634 seconds, Bottas took pole for the Spanish Grand Prix by the largest margin since fellow Finn Mika Hakkinen took pole at the track by 0.734 seconds in 1998. It was the seventh largest pole margin of the V6 hybrid era.
For Mercedes, it was their 105th pole position in Formula 1 and they equalled Ferrari’s record of seven poles at Catalunya. It was their 63rd front row lock-out, equalling McLaren for second in the all-time list. McLaren’s last front row lock-out came at the 2012 Brazilian Grand Prix.
Of the last 21 qualifying sessions at the Spanish Grand Prix, Mercedes have failed to be fastest in only two: Ferrari were quickest in Q1 and Q2 in 2018.
VERSTAPPEN ON THE PODIUM
With Max Verstappen finishing third, the 2019 Spanish Grand Prix podium was the same as its 2018 counterpart. Red Bull have finished on the podium here in all of the last three seasons. It was Verstappen’s third podium at the track, and his 24th podium finish overall, meaning he now has the same number of top three finishes as Stirling Moss, John Surtees and Alan Jones.
Other than his four DNFs last year, the last time Max Verstappen finished a race in a position lower than where he started it from was at the 2018 Australian Grand Prix. He’s finished in the top five in all of the last 18 races which he’s reached the end of.
On Saturday, Verstappen missed out on the chance of becoming F1’s third-youngest polesitter. When we reach qualifying for the Monaco Grand Prix, Verstappen will be three days older than Fernando Alonso was when the Spaniard took pole for the 2003 Malaysian Grand Prix.
It appears that fourth on the grid slot is only a lucky place to start from if you’re Max Verstappen! The position has recorded two DNFs in the last two years. Before that, Verstappen recorded his maiden win after starting fourth on the grid in 2016, while in 2019 the Dutch driver recorded a podium finish.
Valtteri Bottas, Max Verstappen, Pierre Gasly and Alex Albon all equalled their best qualifying positions of the year so far, while Sebastian Vettel, Robert Kubica and George Russell equalled their worst qualifying positions of the year. Vettel is yet to qualify outside of the top three this season – Lewis Hamilton is the only other driver yet to qualify lower than third in 2019.
Charles Leclerc, Pierre Gasly and Lance Stroll recorded their best Spanish Grand Prix qualifying result, while Max Verstappen equalled his best result.
Despite it being his best qualifying position so far at the Catalunya track, Lance Stroll recorded his ninth consecutive Q1 exit. It’s the first time a Racing Point (Force India) driver has been eliminated in Q1 at the Spanish Grand Prix since 2015.
Robert Kubica recorded his worst qualifying performance in Catalunya, failing to reach the final part of qualifying for the first time at the circuit, and being beaten by his team-mate for the first time.
Nico Hulkenberg was eliminated in Q1 for the third time this season. Renault have seen one of their drivers exit in Q1 at the Spanish Grand Prix in every season since their return to F1.
The Alfa Romeo team (formerly Sauber) have now failed to get a car into the top ten in qualifying at the Spanish Grand Prix in all of the last seven years.
Carlos Sainz failed to reach Q3 for only the second time at his home race. With thirteenth, he recorded his worst qualifying performance so far at the track, his previous worst being twelfth in 2017. It’s the first time he’s been beaten by a team-mate in qualifying here. For the first time since 2015, neither McLaren driver appeared in the top ten on Saturday – though Lando Norris started from tenth on Sunday.
Kimi Raikkonen recorded his first Q2 exit at the Spanish Grand Prix. He’s only failed to reach Q3 at the track once before. That was in 2009, when he was eliminated in the first part of qualifying.
The 2019 Spanish Grand Prix was the sixth race held on 12th May. Only one of those races (the 1991 Monaco Grand Prix) has been won from pole.
16 drivers completed all 66 laps of the 2019 Spanish Grand Prix. That’s the most number of drivers to finish every lap at Catalunya. Ten was the previous record, set in 1997. 18 drivers finished the race, marking the equal second-highest finish rate at the track, bettered only in 2014, when 20 of the 22 starters finished the race.
The only drivers who failed to finish the race were Lando Norris and Lance Stroll. While Norris recorded the second DNF of his career, Stroll recorded his first DNF since last year’s German Grand Prix and his first non-finish at the Catalunya track. Norris’ retirement means that McLaren have had one of their cars retire from the Spanish Grand Prix in every year since 2015.
Kimi Raikkonen finished 14th for only the third time in his career. The other times he has done so were at the 2009 Malaysia Grand Prix and the 2012 Chinese Grand Prix. This is the first race which Raikkonen has finished but not scored a point in since the 2014 United States Grand Prix. The Finn failed to score for the first time in the 2019 season, meaning that only the top five drivers in the championship have scored in all five rounds so far.
Daniil Kvyat equalled his best Spanish Grand Prix finishing position at the Spanish Grand Prix with ninth place. It’s his best result at any race since he finished in ninth at the 2017 Spanish Grand Prix. The last time he finished above ninth in a race was in China in 2016, where he finished on the podium.
Daniel Ricciardo maintains his 100% finish record at the Spanish Grand Prix, but failed to score at the event for the first time since 2012.
There were mixed fortunes for the teams in Barcelona. With both drivers finishing in the top ten, 2019 marks the first visit to Spain where both Haas cars have scored points. At Renault, this was the first time the team have failed to score here since 2016, and only the fourth time overall that the team have left the track point-less – the other times being in 2002 and 2008. The Williams drivers were the only two to not finish on the lead lap. It’s the third consecutive year where the team have failed to score at the track.
Both the tenth and sixteenth grid slots recorded their second consecutive DNFs at the track.
Nicky Haldenby is a freelance writer from Scarborough, England. After graduating from the University of Hull in 2015 with a First Class honours degree in English Language and Literature, Nicky, a lifelong fan of Formula 1, founded the Lights Out F1 Blog in 2016. Now in its fourth 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 sister site GPDestinations, where he shares regular race previews and articles focussed around the latest in Formula 1 calendar and venue news. In 2017 and 2018, he wrote for Badger GP. Nicky can also be heard regularly as a guest on various Formula 1 radio shows and podcasts.