Ferrari have won the last two Australian Grands Prix, while Mercedes have taken pole at the last five. Elsewhere, Haas have finished the race only once and the Sauber team haven’t scored since 2015. Here’s how the teams’ histories compare at the Albert Park Circuit!
Both Mercedes cars have reached the end of the Australian Grand Prix in every year since 2014; with 2018 being the only one of those seasons where only one finished on the podium. Mercedes have recorded just one double DNF here, in 2011, while 2012 is the only other year where they’ve failed to pick up a point at Albert Park. The team have won here three times; in 2014, 2015 and 2016, making them the third most successful team at the track. They’ve led 179 laps of Albert Park so far.
Mercedes have started from pole five times at Albert Park – all five times being in the past five seasons. The team have also locked out the front row in 2015 and 2016. Michael Schumacher’s Q2 elimination here in 2011 is the only time a Mercedes car has failed to reach Q3 since the team re-entered F1 in 2010.
Ferrari have won both of the last two Australian Grands Prix, and have finished on the podium here in all of the last four seasons. With eight wins in total, Ferrari have taken more victories at Albert Park than any other team. With there being just one occasion in the past twelve seasons where the team have failed to pick up a point, it’s perhaps no surprise that Ferrari are the most prolific points scorers in Melbourne. In fact, Ferrari’s 2006 double-DNF at the track is the only other time they’ve failed to score at the circuit.
2006 and 2012 are the only years where both Ferrari cars have failed to reach the final part of qualifying in Melbourne, while 2007, 2008 and 2014 are the only other years where just one Ferrari has reached Q3. For four seasons between 2001 and 2004, Ferrari locked out the front row. Since then however, there have been just three occasions where a Ferrari car has qualified on the front row. Only one of those occasions saw a Ferrari driver qualify on pole. That happened in 2007, when Kimi Raikkonen took pole on his Ferrari début. Could a similar fate await Charles Leclerc this weekend?
Sebastian Vettel’s victory here in 2011 remains Red Bull’s only win at the Australian Grand Prix, while the German also scored the team’s last podium finish at the track back in 2013. Aside from those two occasions, their second place in 2012, again scored by Vettel, is their only other top three appearance at Albert Park; aside from Daniel Ricciardo’s second place in 2014 which was later disqualified. As a result of that disqualification, 2014 is one of only two times where neither Red Bull was classified in the final result – the other time being in 2008 – while 2014 is also their only point-less Melbourne visit from the last nine seasons.
Red Bull have taken three pole positions here, once again all courtesy of Sebastian Vettel, and have locked out the front row twice, in 2010 and 2013. 2014 is the most recent occasion where a Red Bull car has qualified on the front row at Albert Park, while no driver has lined up better than fourth on the grid with the team in the last four seasons. From the past ten years, 2014, 2015 and 2016 are the only times where a Red Bull driver has failed to reach the final part of qualifying. Vettel and Daniil Kvyat were eliminated in Q2 in 2014 and 2015 respectively, while Kvyat was out in Q1 in 2016.
Renault won the Australian Grand Prix in their championship-winning seasons of 2005 and 2006, while Giancarlo Fisichella took the team’s only pole here so far in 2005. The team have enjoyed six podium finishes at Albert Park, most recently in 2011 when Vitaly Petrov claimed the first top three finish for a Russian driver in F1. Renault’s first visit to the track, back in 2002, remains the only time that neither of their cars have reached the end of the race. Last season saw them pick up points in Melbourne for the first time since their return to the sport, with Nico Hulkenberg and Carlos Sainz finishing seventh and tenth respectively. 2018 also saw both Renault cars reach Q3 for the first time at Albert Park since 2006.
In addition, the Enstone team enjoyed a victory under their previous Lotus guise at the hands of Kimi Raikkonen in 2013; though they also recorded two double DNFs in the following two seasons.
A Haas car has only ever reached the end of the Australian Grand Prix once. That happened on the team’s maiden F1 appearance, when Romain Grosjean finished an impressive sixth. Since then, the team have recorded two double DNFs, most notably in 2018 when both Grosjean and Kevin Magnussen were running in fourth and fifth. The team, therefore, have the lowest finish rate of any current team, and the equal-worst finish rate of any team to have ever competed at Albert Park, tied with HRT and Stewart.
Grosjean has qualified in sixth here for the last two seasons, and started within the top five last year thanks to Daniel Ricciardo’s grid penalty. Last year marked the first time both Haas drivers have qualified in the top ten at the circuit. Haas have never been eliminated in Q2 at Albert Park. They’ve reached the final part of qualifying three times, and have been eliminated in Q1 three times.
McLaren’s last podium finish came at Albert Park in 2014, when Kevin Magnussen finished an impressive second on début, while Jenson Button was bumped up to third in the final result. Their impressive tally of 18 podiums at the track leaves them behind only Ferrari’s total, while the team are also second in the all-time win list in Melbourne, having taken six victories. Button remains McLaren’s most recent winner at the circuit, having won for the team in both 2010 and 2012. The 1998 race at Albert Park marks the team’s only 1-2 finish at the track, though they’ve also had 1-3 finishes in 1997, 2003 and 2012. The team have recorded double non-finishes in three years here, in 1999, 2000 and most recently in 2009, when Heikki Kovalainen failed to finish and Lewis Hamilton was disqualified. 2018 marked a return to the points in Melbourne for McLaren for the first time since 2014. Fernando Alonso’s fifth place finish here last year ended up being the team’s best result of the entire season.
McLaren have taken five poles at Albert Park, most recently in 2012, and have locked-out the front row on four occasions. Since their last front-row lockout in 2012, however, Kevin Magnussen’s fourth place in 2014 is the only time a McLaren driver has qualified in the top nine positions. The team have not reached Q3 since 2014, with 2015 being a particularly low point – the team’s only double Q1 elimination in Australia.
Racing Point (Force India)
Racing Point’s former guise Force India have the best finish rate of any current team at the Australian Grand Prix, with their cars failing to finish just four times in the past eleven seasons. 2008 is the only time both Force India cars failed to reach the end of the Grand Prix. Nico Hulkenberg’s sixth place finish here in 2014 is the best result for the team at the track, while there have been five occasions where both cars have brought home points. 2018 marked the first time since 2009 that neither Force India car scored at Albert Park.
The team’s best qualifying performance here was also courtesy of Nico Hulkenberg in 2014, as he qualified in seventh. That’s one of only four times where a Force India driver has reached the final part of qualifying at the track, and their most recent Q3 appearance to date. In every season since 2015, both Force Indias have been eliminated in the second part of qualifying.
Between 1996 and 2007, in their previous Jordan, Midland and Spyker guises, 2005 was the only year where both cars reached the end of the race, while Jordan’s best finish here was second place, courtesy of Heinz-Harald Frentzen in 1999.
Alfa Romeo (Sauber)
Sauber’s only podium finish at Albert Park came in 2008, when Nick Heidfeld finished as runner-up. The team has the second-lowest finish rate of current teams at the track, and have seen one of their cars retire in all of the past three Australian Grands Prix. 2015 is the last time a Sauber car scored at the event, with both Felipe Nasr and Marcus Ericsson finishing the race in the top eight. 2001, 2006 and 2012 are the only other occasions where both Sauber drivers have scored in the race here; both finished in the top ten in 2011 but were disqualified after the event for technical infringements.
The best qualifying result for a Sauber car in Melbourne is second on the grid, again achieved by Nick Heidfeld in 2008. The team have qualified in the top ten only once in the last nine seasons at Albert Park. At least one Sauber has been eliminated in Q1 in every season since 2013, while the team recorded double Q1 eliminations in 2016 and 2018. 2011 is the last time a Sauber appeared in the final part of qualifying here, while 2008 is the last time both Saubers reached Q3.
Toro Rosso’s best result at the Australian Grand Prix is seventh, which Sebastien Bourdais and Sebastien Buemi both achieved in 2008 and 2009 respectively. The team have a healthy finish rate at the event, and there is yet to be a race at Albert Park where both Toro Rosso have failed to finish. There have been four occasions where both cars have scored points in Melbourne, including three times in the past five years. Last year, Toro Rosso failed to score at the event for the fifth time in their existence, and for the first time since 2013.
Max Verstappen’s fifth on the grid for Toro Rosso in 2015 is the team’s best qualifying result so far at this circuit. The team have reached Q3 with both cars three times, in 2014, 2016 and 2017. In 2018, Toro Rosso recorded their first double Q1 exit in Melbourne since 2009. 2007 is the only other year where both cars were eliminated in the first part of qualifying.
Williams were the first ever winners at the Albert Park circuit in the modern era of Formula 1, as Damon Hill took victory at the 1996 event. It’s the only time so far that the team have taken a win in Melbourne. The 1996 race weekend is also memorable for Jacques Villeneuve’s debut for the team, in which he took pole and led the majority of the race. The Canadian once again took pole in the following season for Williams, marking their second, and so far final, front row lock-out at Albert Park. In total, Williams have taken eight podium finishes at this circuit, their most recent being Nico Rosberg’s third place in 2008. The team have recorded three double DNFs here, and there have been seven races at the track in which they’ve failed to score. That tally includes in 2018, when the team failed to pick up a point at the circuit for the first time since 2013.
Last season marked the first time neither Williams car reached the final part of qualifying since 2013. Double Q3 appearances for the team at Albert Park have been rare, with both cars reaching the final part of qualifying in only 2014 and 2015. That said, the team have had only three Q1 exits at the track – Pastor Maldonado in 2013, Lance Stroll in 2017 and Sergey Sirotkin in 2018. From the past 13 seasons, the team have qualified in the top four only once, with Felipe Massa qualifying third in 2015.
After graduating 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 sixth 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 Motorsport Guides. 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.