What were the oldest F1 records broken during the 2022 season? What did Sainz become the first driver to do in a decade? And what unusual occurrence happened at the Sao Paulo Grand Prix? Here are 41 of the best bits of trivia from the 2022 Formula 1 season!
THE FERRARI DROUGHT ENDS
Charles Leclerc’s victory at the season-opening Bahrain Grand Prix ended the second-longest win drought in Ferrari’s history. The only longer wait between victories for the Scuderia came between the 1990 Spanish Grand Prix and the 1994 German Grand Prix – a wait of 3 years and 10 months, compared to the 2 years and 6 months between the 2019 Singapore Grand Prix and the 2022 Bahrain Grand Prix.
A SEASON-OPENING RECORD
The 2022 season holds the record for having the most laps completed in it before the first retirement. Pierre Gasly was the first retirement from the race, with his AlphaTauri car catching fire on Lap 45. All 20 drivers completed the first 44 laps of the year, breaking a 65-year-old record. The 1957 season had held the record previously, with Peter Collins recording the first retirement of the season 27 laps into the Argentine Grand Prix.
MERCEDES DOWN ON POWER
At the 2022 Saudi Arabian Grand Prix, Red Bull qualified first and fourth, Ferrari qualified second and third, while Esteban Ocon qualified fifth for Alpine. That made it the first qualifying session in which no Mercedes-powered cars qualified in the top five since the 2013 Italian Grand Prix.
Two races later, at the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix, both Lewis Hamilton and George Russell missed out on reaching Q3. That made the Imola race the first since the 2012 Japanese Grand Prix, almost ten years and 187 races previously, at which neither of the Mercedes works team’s cars qualified inside the top ten.
A LOW STARTING NUMBER
Only 18 drivers started the 2022 Saudi Arabian Grand Prix. Mick Schumacher was ruled out of the race following his crash in qualifying, while Yuki Tsunoda came to a stop on his way to the grid. That made the Jeddah race the first since the 2015 Australian Grand Prix which only 18 drivers started.
A LONG WAIT FOR #1
As the reigning World Champion, Max Verstappen opted to use the number 1 on his car in 2022. Verstappen’s victory at the 2022 Saudi Arabian Grand Prix was the first for car number 1 since Sebastian Vettel’s win at the 2013 Brazilian Grand Prix. It ended the longest gap between wins for car number 1 in F1 history.
BOTTAS’ IMPRESSIVE Q3 RUN ENDS
Prior to the 2022 season, Valtteri Bottas has reached Q3 at every race weekend since the beginning of the 2017 season. While Bottas qualified in the top ten at the first two races of the year, he was out in Q2 at the Australian Grand Prix, ending a record run of 103 consecutive Q3 appearances. It’s the record for most consecutive Q3 appearances, as well as one of the longest top ten qualification streaks in F1 history. It’s bettered by only Ayrton Senna (137 races, between the 1985 Dutch Grand Prix and 1994 San Marino Grand Prix) and Alain Prost (109 races, between the 1983 Canadian Grand Prix and the 1990 Canadian Grand Prix).
At the Belgian Grand Prix, Bottas recorded his first Q1 exit in over seven years. It was his first Q1 exit since the 2015 Monaco Grand Prix, 148 races prior to the Spa-Francorchamps race.
BRITISH DRIVER RECORDS
With three Brits within the top five teams, there were a number of milestones and records for British drivers in 2022.
- At the 2022 Saudi Arabian Grand Prix, Britain became the first nation to have scored 10,000 points in Formula 1.
- With George Russell on the podium, Lewis Hamilton fourth and Lando Norris fifth, the 2022 Australian Grand Prix was the first race at which three British drivers have finished in the top five since the 1999 British Grand Prix.
- Russell’s maiden pole position at the 2022 Hungarian Grand Prix saw Britain equal its own record for most consecutive seasons in which a nation has taken pole. This was the 19th successive year in which a British driver secured a pole position. British drivers last took pole in 19 consecutive seasons between 1955 and 1973.
- At Monza, with Hamilton, Russell and Norris all scoring points, Britain equalled the third longest scoring streak for a nation in F1. That streak now stands at 94 races at the end of the 2022 season. The longest ever streak of points for a nation is 176 races, for Germany between the 2008 British and 2015 Italian Grands Prix.
- Both Norris and Hamilton finished in the points at the Singapore Grand Prix, making the Marina Bay race the 900th World Championship race in which a British driver scored.
- At the 2022 Sao Paulo Grand Prix, Russell and Hamilton secured the first 1-2 finish for British drivers since the 2010 Canadian Grand Prix.
- Russell’s win at Interlagos also ensured that 2022 would be the 17th consecutive season with at least one victory for a British driver – the nation’s second-longest such streak.
And despite all the positives, 2022 was the first season since 2013 in which no British drivers finished in the top three in the Drivers’ Championship!
GRAND SLAMS GALORE
For the first time in Formula 1 history, two different drivers recorded Grand Slams at consecutive races. Charles Leclerc recorded the first Grand Slam of his career at the Australian Grand Prix, while Max Verstappen recorded his second at the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix.
It was also only the fourth time that Grand Slams have been achieved at two successive races. On the other three occasions, a single driver took a Grand Slam at two races in a row. Alberto Ascari achieved it in 1953, Jim Clark in 1963 and Sebastian Vettel did so in 2013.
THE 2023 LAS VEGAS GRAND PRIX POLESITTER PROBABLY WON’T WIN
Charles Leclerc’s second place finish at the 2022 Miami Grand Prix means that Clay Regazzoni remains the last driver to win the first race at a new venue in the United States from pole position. He did so at Long Beach, for the 1976 United States Grand Prix West. It’s not the best omen for whoever takes pole at next year’s inaugural Las Vegas Grand Prix!
Ferrari locked out the front row twice in the first seven races of the 2022 season, with Charles Leclerc securing pole position and Carlos Sainz lining up alongside him on the front row at the Miami and Monaco Grands Prix. However, the Monaco Grand Prix would proved to be the last front row lock out for any team until the Sao Paulo Grand Prix, when both Mercedes drivers lined up at the front of the grid.
That meant there were 13 consecutive races at which no team locked-out the front row of the grid. It was the longest streak without a front row lock out since the 20 races between the 2004 Belgian and 2005 Italian Grands Prix.
It was the ninth longest streak without a front row lock out in F1 history. The longest ever such streak was for the 49 races between the 1961 United States Grand Prix and the 1966 Mexican Grand Prix.
LAPS RACED RECORDS TUMBLE
Fernando Alonso broke a 55-year-old Graham Hill record at the 2022 Monaco Grand Prix. Hill had held the record for most laps raced in the principality since 1967, but Alonso finally ousted him from the top spot in 2022. Alonso has now raced 1,262 laps at Circuit de Monaco – more than any other driver in F1 history.
Similarly, in Mexico, Pedro Rodriguez lost his record as the driver to have raced the most laps at Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez. His record tally of 457 laps raced at the circuit was bettered by Max Verstappen, Lewis Hamilton, Valtteri Bottas, Sebastian Vettel and Sergio Perez during the 2022 record. The new record for most laps raced here is 497, held by Verstappen. Rodriguez had held the previous record since 1970.
Elsewhere in 2022, Alonso surpassed Kimi Raikkonen for most laps raced at Albert Park, Sebastian Vettel overtook Michael Schumacher as the driver to have raced the most laps at Spa-Francorchamps, Lewis Hamilton remained the only driver to complete all 560 racing laps at Circuit of The Americas and Hamilton & Vettel remain the only drivers to race all 306 laps at Baku City Circuit.
Fernando Alonso became the most experienced Formula 1 driver in 2022 by a number of measures. At the Azerbaijan Grand Prix, he set a new record for the longest F1 career, overtaking Michael Schumacher. On the fourth lap of the French Grand Prix he overtook Kimi Raikkonen as the driver to have completed the most Grand Prix laps in Formula 1 history. And at the Singapore Grand Prix, he became the first to reach 350 Grand Prix starts.
Alonso celebrated his 41st birthday two days before the Hungarian Grand Prix. He finished in eighth place at the Hungaroring, becoming only the eighth driver since 1970 to score points at the age of 41 or older. He is only the third driver to have done so this millennium, after the aforementioned Schumacher and Raikkonen.
DIFFERENT WINNERS, DIFFERENT POLESITTERS
There have now been six Formula 1 races at Baku City Circuit and there is still yet to be a repeat winner at the track. Max Verstappen became the venue’s sixth different winner at the 2022 Azerbaijan Grand Prix. Only nine other circuits have held more races before having their first repeat winner. The longest wait for a repeat winner was at Circuit Paul Ricard. Nigel Mansell became the first repeat winner at the venue in the 1987 French Grand Prix – the 11th race to be held at the track!
Similarly, in Mexico, there have been no repeat polesitters in any of the last 11 races at Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez. Verstappen became the 11th consecutive different polesitter at the track in 2022. The record for the longest streak without a repeat polesitter at a single circuit is 14 races, in the 14 Argentine Grands Prix held at Autódromo Oscar y Juan Gálvez between 1958 and 1997.
ROSBERG RECORD FINALLY BROKEN
Despite racing at Baku City Circuit only once, Nico Rosberg held the record for most laps led at the circuit since 2016. He led all 51 laps of the inaugural race at the track in 2016. Max Verstappen finally broke Rosberg’s record of laps led in Baku in 2022. After the 2022 Azerbaijan Grand Prix, Verstappen’s tally of Azerbaijan Grand Prix laps led now stands at 65.
THE 150 CLUB
An unusual occurrence happened at the Canadian and British Grands Prix. Max Verstappen won on his 150th Grand Prix start at Circuit Gilles Villeneuve, while Carlos Sainz won on his 150th Grand Prix start one race later at Silverstone. Though both drivers made their debut with Toro Rosso at the 2015 Australian Grand Prix, Sainz has made one less start than Verstappen as he failed to start the 2020 Belgian Grand Prix.
SAINZ CONVERTS MAIDEN POLE TO WIN
For the first time in over a decade, a driver converted their maiden pole position into a victory. Carlos Sainz was the driver to finally buck the trend and convert his first pole to a win at the British Grand Prix. He was the first driver to do so since Pastor Maldonado at the 2012 Spanish Grand Prix. In the ten years between Sainz and Maldonado’s pole to win conversion, seven other drivers failed to win their first race from pole.
Sainz was one of four new polesitters in 2022. It was the first season since 1979 to have as many as four new polesitters. The other three new polesitters this year all failed to convert their maiden pole into a win. Sergio Perez failed to win after ending the longest ever wait for a maiden pole at the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix, George Russell failed to win in Hungary when he took his first pole and Kevin Magnussen slipped to eighth in the Sprint at the Sao Paulo Grand Prix having taken pole position in a wet Friday qualifying session.
HAMILTON BREAKS 67-YEAR-OLD VUKOVICH RECORD
Lewis Hamilton led four laps during the 2022 Hungarian Grand Prix, taking his total number of laps led at the Hungaroring to 487. That saw him break Bill Vukovich’s 67 year old record of most laps led at a single circuit. Vukovich led 485 laps at Indianapolis Motor Speedway when the Indianapolis 500 was a round of the World Championship between 1950 and 1960.
BEST OF FRIENDS
At the 2022 Hungarian Grand Prix, Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton recorded their 31st 1-2 finish, equalling Hamilton and Nico Rosberg as the driver pairing with the most 1-2 finishes in F1 history. The duo went on to score two more 1-2 finishes in 2022 – at the United States and Mexico City Grands Prix.
Verstappen and Hamilton equalled the Hamilton/Rosberg record at the Hungarian Grand Prix despite that race being only the fifth to feature neither Hamilton nor Verstappen in the top six on the grid since Verstappen started in Formula 1 at the beginning of the 2015 season. The other races at which this has happened are the 2016 Chinese, Russian & European Grands Prix and the 2018 Bahrain Grand Prix. It has happened once more since, at the 2022 Italian Grand Prix.
FAR BACK WINS AT CONSECUTIVE RACES
For only the second time in F1 history, two consecutive races were won from 10th or lower on the grid during the 2022 season. Max Verstappen won the Hungarian Grand Prix from 10th on the grid before winning the Belgian Grand Prix from 14th.
The only other time two races in a row were won from 10th or lower on the grid was over 60 years. On that occasion it was the same driver who won both races, too. Bruce McLaren won the 1959 United States Grand Prix from 10th on the grid and the 1960 Argentine Grand Prix from 13th on the grid. Strangely, Verstappen also won his two races having started 10th and 13th in the starting order. Though he lined up in the 14th grid slot at Spa, Pierre Gasly (due to start eighth on the grid) was pushed into the pit lane ahead of the race and his grid slot was left clear.
GASLY BREAKS AN ASCARI SPA RECORD
Despite starting from the pit lane, Pierre Gasly kept his 100% points-scoring record at the Belgian Grand Prix intact. Impressively, Gasly became the first driver in F1 history to score on all of his first five appearances at Spa, overtaking a long-standing record held by Alberto Ascari since 1953. Ascari scored on all four of his appearances at the circuit but Gasly is the first to score in all of his first five races at the track.
NOT A GERMAN IN SIGHT
In Free Practice 1 for the 2022 Italian Grand Prix, Sebastian Vettel handed his car over to Nyck de Vries, while Mick Schumacher handed his car to Antonio Giovinazzi. That made it the first time no German drivers appeared on track in a Formula 1 session since the 1991 Hungarian Grand Prix – the race before Michael Schumacher made his debut at the 1991 Belgian Grand Prix. Neither Vettel or the younger Schumacher will be on the grid in 2023, but Nico Hulkenberg returns at Haas – meaning the nation’s tally of 860 Grand Prix starts will continue to grow.
Ferrari sported special yellow race suits for the 2022 Italian Grand Prix, celebrating 75 years of Ferrari and 100 years of the Monza circuit. Leclerc took pole position wearing the yellow race suit, becoming the first driver to take pole position dressed in a predominantly yellow race suit since Heinz-Harald Frentzen at the 1999 European Grand Prix.
GOD SAVE THE KING
The 2022 Italian Grand Prix was the first World Championship event at which Queen Elizabeth II in over 60 years. Following her death in September, the Italian Grand Prix was the first Formula 1 race to take place with Queen Elizabeth II not being the reigning British monarch since the 1951 Spanish Grand Prix, won by Juan Manuel Fangio.
George Russell became Britain’s 20th Grand Prix winner at the Sao Paulo Grand Prix and his victory marked the first time that God Save The King was played on the Formula 1 podium. Russell is the first British driver to win with Queen Elizabeth II not being the reigning British monarch. Britain’s first World Championship race winner was Mike Hawthorn, at the 1953 French Grand Prix, over 16 months after Queen Elizabeth II had ascended to the throne.
Nyck de Vries made his Formula 1 debut at the 2022 Italian Grand Prix, making the Monza race the first since the 2006 Brazilian Grand Prix, 16 years previously, to feature two Dutch drivers on the grid. Christijan Albers and Robert Doornbos were the Dutch drivers on the grid at that event. With Max Verstappen and De Vries both crossing the finish line, it was the first time since the Interlagos race that two Dutch drivers have reached the chequered flag.
With both Verstappen and De Vries in the top ten, the 2022 Italian Grand Prix was the first Formula 1 race ever in which multiple Dutch drivers have scored points. They’re both on the grid in 2023 – so we could see more double Dutch Sundays next year!
KING OF THE TRIPLE HEADERS
Only one driver has won three Formula 1 races on three consecutive weekends – and he has now done it twice. Verstappen won all three races in a triple header for the second time at the 2022 Belgian, Dutch and Italian Grands Prix, having last done so at the 2021 French, Styrian and Austrian Grands Prix.
THE ITALIAN GRAND PRIX CURSE
Max Verstappen could be in for a rough ride at the 2023 Italian Grand Prix if this Monza curse doesn’t lift. In all of the past three seasons, the driver who won the previous year’s Italian Grand Prix has retired from the Monza race in the following season.
Charles Leclerc took a home victory for Ferrari in the 2019 Italian Grand Prix before crashing out one year later. Pierre Gasly took an unexpected win in 2020 but failed to finish in 2021. Daniel Ricciardo took the win for McLaren in 2021 but retired just eight laps from the end in 2022.
UNWANTED QUALIFYING RECORDS FOR LATIFI AND STROLL
Three drivers surpassed 50 Q1 exits in 2022. Lance Stroll was first to do so, at the Australian Grand Prix. Kevin Magnussen joined him at the Belgian Grand Prix and Nicholas Latifi did so at the Singapore Grand Prix.
Latifi reached the milestone in record time, recording his 50th Q1 exit on his 56th F1 appearance. The previous record for the fewest number of races in which a driver has reached 50 Q1 eliminations was for Marcus Ericsson, who did so on his 66th appearance.
Stroll continued to move up the all-time Q1 exit list throughout the 2022 season. Now the only second driver to record 60 Q1 exits, Stroll sits second in the all-time list of most Q1 exits. Only Ericsson is ahead of him, with 71 Q1 eliminations.
Meanwhile, Magnussen holds the unusual distinction be only the second driver, after former team-mate Romain Grosjean, to record over 40 Q1 exits, 40 Q2 eliminations and 40 Q3 appearances.
PROLIFIC POLESITTER, BUT NOT THE TITLE WINNER
He may have won only three races, but Charles Leclerc secured nine poles during the 2022 season. He is only the 15th driver to have taken nine poles in a single season and only the third Ferrari driver to do so, after Niki Lauda (1974 & 1975) and Michael Schumacher (2000 & 2001).
Leclerc is only the seventh driver to take as many as nine poles in a year without winning the title. Other drivers to have done so are Ronnie Peterson (9 in 1973), Niki Lauda (9 in 1974), Nelson Piquet (9 in 1984), Ayrton Senna (13 in 1989), Nico Rosberg (11 in 2014) and Lewis Hamilton (12 in 2016).
RED BULL NEAR SINGAPORE PODIUM RECORD
Sergio Perez’s victory at the 2022 Singapore Grand Prix made it the 11th consecutive race at Marina Bay Street Circuit in which a Red Bull driver finished on the podium. That puts them one short of the record for most consecutive races at a circuit in which a team has finished on the podium. Ferrari finished on the podium at Monza in all 12 races at the circuit between 1950 and 1961.
11 YEARS TO THE DAY
Max Verstappen was crowned World Champion for the second time at the 2022 Japanese Grand Prix. Verstappen won his second title with Red Bull at Suzuka 11 years to the day since Sebastian Vettel won his second title with Red Bull at Suzuka. Verstappen became Formula 1’s second-youngest double World Champion. Only Vettel won his second title at a younger age.
A RECORD FOR LATIFI
Nicholas Latifi scored his first points of the 2022 season with ninth place in the Japanese Grand Prix. This was the third time Latifi scored in his F1 career – the first time he did so since the 2021 Belgian Grand Prix. Latifi only ever scored in rain-affected races. His only other points-scoring appearance came at the 2021 Hungarian Grand Prix.
Latifi is one of only two drivers to have scored on every visit to Suzuka. The only other driver to have done so is Cristiano da Matta, who finished seventh on his only start at the circuit with Toyota in 2003.
ALFA ROMEO’S FIRST FASTEST LAP IN 40 YEARS
At the Japanese Grand Prix, Zhou Guanyu recorded the fastest lap of the race for Alfa Romeo. It was the first fastest lap for the Alfa Romeo marque since Andrea de Cesaris set the fastest lap in the 1983 Belgian Grand Prix and the first fastest lap for the former Sauber team since the 2013 Spanish Grand Prix.
FROM BACK ROW TO POINTS
19th was a pretty good grid slot to start from in 2022. In the 11 races between the Canadian and United States Grands Prix, the driver starting 19th scored points on seven occasions – as many times as the driver starting 5th did in the same period. The best result recorded from the grid slot was fifth, for Charles Leclerc at the Canadian Grand Prix and for Lewis Hamilton at the Italian Grand Prix.
Every grid slot scored on at least three occasions in 2022, while pit lane starters picked up points twice.
SAINZ TO TAKE POLE AT 2026 MEXICO CITY GRAND PRIX
Carlos Sainz’s unusual qualifying record continued in Mexico in 2022. Qualifying fifth, he has qualified one position better than on his previous appearance on every visit to the Mexico City Grand Prix. That puts him on course to qualify on pole at Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez in 2026!
LOTUS LOSE LONG STANDING MEXICO WIN RECORD
At the 2022 Mexico City Grand Prix, Red Bull recorded their fourth win in Mexico. That saw them overtake Lotus as the team to have won the most races in Mexico. This is the first time in Mexican Grand Prix history that Lotus do not hold the record for most wins in the country. They had held the record since the very first World Championship Mexican Grand Prix in 1963.
DEJA VU IN MEXICO
Lewis Hamilton and Sergio Perez joined Max Verstappen on the podium. The 2022 Mexico City Grand Prix podium was identical to the 2021 race. This was only the sixth time in F1 history that two consecutive races at a circuit have had the same podium. It last happened at the 2020 and 2021 Spanish Grands Prix.
MAGNUSSEN AND RUSSELL SHARE RARE FIRST POLE AND FIRST WIN
One of the biggest shocks of the season was Kevin Magnussen securing the first pole position of his career during a Friday qualifying session held in mixed weather conditions at the Sao Paulo Grand Prix. In the race, George Russell took his first career victory, becoming the 113th driver to win a round of the World Championship.
It’s very rare for two different drivers to secure their first pole and first win at the same Grand Prix. Not including the Indianapolis 500, it has happened only seven other times. The 2022 Sao Paulo Grand Prix marked the first time it had happened since the 2003 Malaysian Grand Prix, at which Fernando Alonso took his first pole and Kimi Raikkonen took his first win.
FASTEST LAP STREAKS
Both Charles Leclerc and George Russell set streaks of three consecutive fastest laps during the 2022 season. Leclerc set the fastest lap at all of the first three races of the season, becoming only the second driver, after Emerson Fittipaldi in 1973, to have taken the fastest lap at the three opening races of the year.
Meanwhile, George Russell took the fastest lap for three races in a row at the United States, Mexico City and Sao Paulo Grands Prix. Before 2022, no driver had taken three consecutive races since Lewis Hamilton did so at the 2014 Italian, Singapore and Japanese Grands Prix.
7 DIFFERENT GRID SLOTS WON FOR THE 3RD YEAR IN A ROW
Wins were taken from seven grid slots in 2022. 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 7th, 10th and 14th all supplied wins this year, making it only the 16th season in which so many grid slots have won. The same number of grid slots also won in both 2020 and 2021. 1982 is the season in which the most grid slots won. Ten different grid positions took a win that year.
Max Verstappen won from every single one of the seven grid slots which took a win this year. He is only the 12th driver to have won from so many grid slots in his career. Fernando Alonso holds the record for most different grid slots from which a driver has won. Alonso’s 32 career victories have come from nine different grid positions.
Verstappen’s win from 14th at Spa was the furthest back grid slot from which a podium finish was recorded from. The only other podium finish from outside the top ten on the grid was for Charles Leclerc, who started 12th at the United States Grand Prix. Leclerc’s was the first podium finish recorded from 12th on the grid in over ten years, since Sergio Perez finished as runner-up at the 2012 Italian Grand Prix.
WIN THE FIRST RACE, FINISH SECOND IN THE CHAMPIONSHIP
Charles Leclerc continued a six-year streak of the driver who won the first race of the season failing to go on and win the title. In every season since 2017, the winner of the season-opening race has gone on to finish as the runner-up in the Drivers’ Championship. Nico Rosberg is the last driver to have won the first race of the season and the title, doing so in 2016.
RICCIARDO’S MAMMOTH STREAK SET TO END
Daniel Ricciardo made his final race start, at least for the time being, at the 2022 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix. Ricciardo has never missed a race since his Formula 1 career began at the 2011 British Grand Prix. That gives him a streak of 232 consecutive starts – the second largest in F1 history, bettered only by Lewis Hamilton between the 2007 Australian Grand Prix and the 2020 Bahrain Grand Prix.
Ricciardo is now confirmed as Red Bull’s third driver for 2023 meaning that, barring any strange circumstances, the 2023 Bahrain Grand Prix will be the first without Ricciardo on the grid since the 2011 European Grand Prix. It will also be the first without either Ricciardo or Sebastian Vettel starting since the 2007 European Grand Prix.
What are your favourite statistics from the 2022 Formula 1 season? Leave a comment below!