Alonso breaks the record for the longest F1 career, Hamilton can become only the second driver with a gap of 15 years between his first and last wins and Verstappen could overtake Vettel’s Red Bull podium tally. Here are the milestones and records which could be broken at the 2022 Azerbaijan Grand Prix!
The 2022 Azerbaijan Grand Prix will be the 1,065th World Championship race. It will be the fifth Azerbaijan Grand Prix since the event was first held in 2017 and the sixth time that F1 has raced at Baku City Circuit. The first race held at this track in 2016 was titled the European Grand Prix.
Fernando Alonso will set a new record for the longest F1 career this weekend. The current record belongs to Michael Schumacher, who had an interval of 21 years and 3 months between his first and last appearances at the 1991 Belgian Grand Prix and the 2012 Brazilian Grand Prix. Race day at the Azerbaijan Grand Prix will mark 21 years, 3 months and 8 days since Alonso’s debut at the 2001 Australian Grand Prix.
With Sebastian Vettel and Mick Schumacher on the grid, this will be the 846th race to feature a German driver on the grid. That sees Germany overtake Brazil as the country with the third-most starts in Formula 1 history.
The 2022 Azerbaijan Grand Prix will be the eighth race held on June 12th. It becomes only the fourteenth date on which eight or more World Championship races have been held. The last race held on this day was the 2016 Canadian Grand Prix. It’s the first time since 1966 that a race on this day will not take place in Canada.
The 45th lap of the 2022 Azerbaijan Grand Prix will be the 300th racing lap to take place at Baku City Circuit.
This will be the first race at Baku City Circuit to not feature Kimi Raikkonen on the grid. The total number of drivers to have started every F1 race at the track will therefore drop to seven.
THE F1 RECORDS TO BREAK
June 10th marks 15 years since Lewis Hamilton’s first F1 win at the 2007 Canadian Grand Prix. If Hamilton wins any race from now on, he’ll become only the second driver – after Kimi Raikkonen – with a gap of longer than 15 years between his first and last F1 wins.
A podium finish for Max Verstappen this weekend would see him surpass Sebastian Vettel’s tally of podiums with Red Bull. It would put him third in the list of most top three finishes with a single team, behind only Lewis Hamilton with Mercedes and Michael Schumacher with Ferrari.
A front row qualification for Charles Leclerc would make this the eighth consecutive race for which he has started on the front row. It would be the 25th time that a driver has started on the front row at eight or more consecutive races. Leclerc would be the 15th driver to achieve the feat.
If Fernando Alonso finishes in the top ten this weekend, he will equal Michael Schumacher as the driver to have scored in the second-most F1 races. Alonso has scored in 220 races so far in his career, Schumacher scored in 221. If Alonso scores 10 points over the Azerbaijan Grand Prix weekend, he will become only the third driver to have scored 2,000 points in his F1 career.
McLaren will become only the third team to have scored 6,000 points in F1 history if they pick up 11 points over the Azerbaijan Grand Prix weekend. Ferrari and Mercedes are the only other teams to have scored 6,000 points.
A top ten result for Lando Norris would make this the 50th race in which he has scored points. He would be the 49th driver to have scored in 50 races.
If the polesitter takes victory at the 2022 Azerbaijan Grand Prix, it would be the 450th time that the polesitter has won the race in World Championship history.
A podium result for Bottas would see him equal Rubens Barrichello as the non-champion with the most podiums in F1.
Sebastian Vettel will become the third driver to record podium finishes in fifteen different seasons if he finishes in the top three.
THE BAKU RECORDS TO BREAK
Sebastian Vettel is the only driver to have scored in every race at Baku City Circuit to date. He’ll be hoping to maintain his 100% points scoring record with another top ten finish this weekend. If he fails to score, Carlos Sainz, Lewis Hamilton and Sergio Perez can equal his record of five points-scoring appearances at the track.
No driver has won at Baku City Circuit more than once. That could change this weekend if Daniel Ricciardo, Lewis Hamilton, Valtteri Bottas or Sergio Perez take victory.
There’s also yet to be a repeat polesitter at the track – but Lewis Hamilton, Sebastian Vettel, Valtteri Bottas or Charles Leclerc could change that in 2022.
If a Ferrari driver takes pole, they would be only the second team to record consecutive poles in Baku. Mercedes are the only team to have done so, doing so in 2016 and 2017.
Mercedes hold the record for most wins in Baku, with three. Their tally could be equalled this weekend by Red Bull – or Mercedes could extend their record further.
Mercedes also hold the record for most poles at the circuit, with three. Ferrari are the only other team to have taken pole here, and could equal Mercedes’ record this weekend.
Victory for a Red Bull driver this weekend would see the team become the second to record consecutive wins in Baku. Mercedes are the only other team to have done so, with their drivers taking victory in both 2018 and 2019.
Sebastian Vettel and Sergio Perez share the record for most podium finishes at Baku City Circuit, with three apiece. Either driver could extend that record this week, or the record could be equalled by Valtteri Bottas and Lewis Hamilton.
Mercedes’ record tally of five podium finishes in Baku could be equalled this weekend, but only if both Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz finish on the podium and both Mercedes drivers finish outside of the top three.
If he wins the race, Sebastian Vettel would become the first driver to have scored 100 points at Baku City Circuit.
Nico Rosberg is the only driver to have held the record for most laps led in Baku, despite having only raced here once. Rosberg led all 51 laps on his way to victory in the 2016 European Grand Prix. His record tally could be equalled by any of the 20 drivers on the grid, but could be overtaken by Valtteri Bottas, Lewis Hamilton, Sebastian Vettel, Max Verstappen, Charles Leclerc, Daniel Ricciardo or Sergio Perez.
Lewis Hamilton and Sebastian Vettel are the only drivers to have completed all 255 racing laps so far at Baku City Circuit. If they complete 45 laps of the race, they’ll become the first drivers to have led 300 laps at the track. Valtteri Bottas is the only other driver who can reach 300 laps raced here this weekend.
Max Verstappen could set a new outright record for most non-finishes at Baku City Circuit this weekend. He’s currently tied with Daniil Kvyat on three DNFs at the track. Their existing record could be equalled by Daniel Ricciardo or Esteban Ocon.
Lewis Hamilton, Max Verstappen, Sergio Perez, Lando Norris, Yuki Tsunoda and Valtteri Bottas will be looking to maintain their 100% Q3 appearance record at Baku City Circuit.
Carlos Sainz currently shares the record for most Q2 exits in Baku with Kevin Magnussen. He could extend the record to four this weekend, or his tally could be equalled by Daniel Ricciardo and Fernando Alonso if they’re out in the second stage of qualifying.
Lance Stroll can equal the record for most Q1 exits at the circuit. Romain Grosjean and Marcus Ericsson currently share the record for most Q1 eliminations at the track, with three apiece.
HAMILTON SEARCHES FOR FIRST WIN OF 2022
Victory for Lewis Hamilton in any race in 2022 will see him become the first driver in F1 history to have won a race in 16 different seasons, as well as the first to win in 16 consecutive seasons.
If he takes pole position, sets the fastest lap and wins the race, Lewis Hamilton would become the second driver – after Michael Schumacher – to record 20 hat tricks in his F1 career.
If Lewis Hamilton sets the Fastest Lap of the race, he will become the first driver to set 60 Fastest Laps with a single engine manufacturer.
Pole for a British driver would see the nation equal their own record for most consecutive seasons in which a nation has taken pole. The current record held by British drivers is 19 consecutive seasons with a pole position, between 1955 and 1973.
At the season-opening Bahrain Grand Prix, Lewis Hamilton recorded his 32nd third place finish in F1. Another third place this weekend would see him equal Sebastian Vettel as the driver to have recorded the second-most third places in F1 history. Only Kimi Raikkonen sits ahead of Vettel and Hamilton in this list, with 45 third place results.
MERCEDES STILL SEEK SUCCESS
Pole for Mercedes would make them the first engine manufacturer to have poles in 26 consecutive seasons. Ferrari are the only other engine manufacturer to have poles in 25 successive years. Their record streak ended in 2020. Meanwhile, if a Mercedes-powered car leads the race, the manufacturer would be first to lead races in 28 consecutive seasons.
If three Mercedes-powered cars finish on the podium, Mercedes will equal Renault’s record tally of seventeen podium lockouts for an engine manufacturer.
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 and Motorsport Guides and can be heard as the resident stats man on the 2 Soft Compounds Podcast. His work has appeared on WTF1, BadgerGP, motorsport.com, Sky Sports F1 and BBC Radio 5 Live. Nicky is also the host of the F1 Rewind Podcast.