Four points. That’s all Lewis Hamilton needs to be crowned World Champion for a sixth time. Here are the title permutations ahead of the 2019 United States Grand Prix.
The title permutations for the United States Grand Prix are somewhat simpler than they were at the Mexico Grand Prix. If Lewis Hamilton scores four points at the Circuit of the Americas he will win the title. All he has to do is finish in eighth position or higher, or finish ninth with the fastest lap, and the title will be his, regardless of where Valtteri Bottas finishes.
The only way that Bottas stands a chance of stopping Hamilton winning the title is by winning the race. Bottas needs to outscore Hamilton by 23 points to keep the title fight alive – and the only way he can do that is with a win.
What if Hamilton doesn’t finish?
If Lewis Hamilton fails to finish the United States Grand Prix, he still has a good chance of clinching the title. The only way that he won’t win the title in this scenario is if Valtteri Bottas wins the race.
Previous United States title winners
Circuit of the Americas has seen a champion crowned only once before. That was in 2015, when Lewis Hamilton claimed his third title in Texas as a result of winning the race.
If Hamilton does win the title at COTA, it’ll be the sixth time a champion has been crowned in the USA. Jack Brabham won his first title as a result of the 1959 US Grand Prix, Jochen Rindt was posthumously crowned champion as a result of the 1970 US race, Emerson Fittipaldi won his second title at the 1974 United States Grand Prix and the 1977 United States race saw Niki Lauda win his second title.
NEW POINTS RECORDS?
Both Hamilton and Mercedes could set new records for most points scored in a single season. Hamilton set a new record in the Drivers’ Championship by scoring 408 points in 2018. Hamilton has scored 363 points so far this year and there are still 78 points on offer for the remaining three races of the 2019 season. A top two finish in the last three races will see Hamilton set a new record, while a third place finish in all three would see him equal his current record.
For Mercedes, the number of points they need to beat to set a new record is 765 – the number which they scored in 2016. They have scored 652 points so far this year, and there are a maximum of 132 points remaining this year, giving them a possible maximum tally of 784 points, should they finish 1-2 and secure the fastest lap in all four races.
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. 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, Motorsport Guides and WTF1. 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.