Verstappen has won the last three Yas Marina races from pole position, while 2022 was the first time Hamilton failed to finish on the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix podium since 2013. Here’s everything you need to know about each driver’s history at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix!
🇳🇱 Max VERSTAPPEN
Max Verstappen has won the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix from pole position in each of the last three seasons. He has finished in the top five here in all of the last seven seasons, and has finished in the top three in all of the last five years. 2015, when he finished 16th for Toro Rosso, is his only non-points scoring appearance at the track.
Verstappen has reached Q3 at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix in all of the last seven seasons, qualifying in the top six on each occasion. Verstappen did not out-qualify a team-mate here until 2019, but is yet to be beaten on Saturday since then. He has started on the front row in the last four years here, his 2019 front row courtesy of a grid penalty for Valtteri Bottas.
🇲🇽 Sergio PEREZ
Sergio Perez recorded his first Abu Dhabi Grand Prix podium finish last year. His third place finish followed two consecutive seasons in which the Mexican failed to reach the chequered flag at Yas Marina Circuit. He had scored in all of the seven seasons prior to that. 2011 and 2012 are the only seasons other than 2020 and 2021 in which Perez has failed to score a point at the track.
Despite his high points scoring rate, Perez has reached Q3 at the circuit only six times from his 12 appearances. He recorded his first front row qualification at the track last year, qualifying behind his team-mate in second place. 2019 is the last time Perez out-qualified his team-mate at Yas Marina Circuit.
🇲🇨 Charles LECLERC
2020 marks the only time that Charles Leclerc has failed to score at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix in his five appearances at the circuit. He finished seventh for Sauber in 2018, before going on to finish third for Ferrari in 2019. After a tenth place finish in 2021, he recorded his best result to date at the track last year, finishing as runner-up.
Leclerc has qualified in the top ten on all five outings here, with a best qualifying result of third in 2022. 2021 was the first – and so far only – time Leclerc has been out-qualified by a team-mate at the track.
Before reaching F1, Leclerc raced at the Yas Marina Circuit in both GP3 and F2. In 2017, he took podium finishes in both the Feature and Sprint races on his last F2 appearances, standing on the top step of the podium after the Sprint race.
🇪🇸 Carlos SAINZ
Carlos Sainz finished on the podium at the 2021 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix and has finished in the points on all of his last five appearances at the track. He failed to score on his first three appearances here. He came home 11th in 2015, before recording successive DNFs in 2016 and 2017.
Sainz has reached Q3 on his last four Abu Dhabi Grand Prix appearances, with a best qualifying result of fourth in 2022. 2015 is the only other season in which he has qualified in the top ten at Yas Marina Circuit. 2021 was the first time since his maiden season that Sainz out-qualified his team-mate at the track. He was out-qualified by Charles Leclerc last year.
🇬🇧 Lewis HAMILTON
In 2022, Lewis Hamilton failed to finish the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix. It marked the first time he failed to finish on the podium at Yas Marina Circuit since 2013, as well as his first retirement at the track since 2012.
Hamilton has been victorious here five times, while his third place in 2020 is his only other non top two finish at Yas Marina Circuit since 2013. His retirements here in 2009, 2012 and 2022 are the only times that he has not picked up points at the track, with his seventh place in 2013 the only other time he has not finished on the podium.
Hamilton has a highly impressive qualifying record here, with five poles. Fifth place in 2022 was his worst ever qualifying result at the track. Aside from 2022, a fourth place qualification in 2013 and a third place qualification in 2020, are the only times that Hamilton has not started from the front row at the track.
Given his high starting positions, it’s unsurprising that Hamilton has never gained more than one position from where he has started at the track. 2010, 2013, 2020 and 2022 are the only years that Hamilton has not led at least three laps of the event.
🇬🇧 George RUSSELL
George Russell finished in fifth place at last year’s Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, picking up points at Yas Marina Circuit for the first time. He had never previously finished above 15th place at the track. On his final appearance with Williams, in 2021, Russell retired from the race. It’s his only retirement so far at the venue.
Russell’s sixth place in qualifying last year was the first time he has progressed past Q1 at the track. 2021 was a rare occasion on which Russell was out-qualified by a team-mate while at Williams and he was out-qualified by Lewis Hamilton last year.
Russell has gained a single position from where he has started each time he has reached the chequered flag at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.
Prior to F1, in the four races in which he contested at the Yas Marina Circuit, Russell never finished below fourth. He finished as runner up in the first GP3 race of the 2017 weekend at the track, a weekend on which he also partook in Free Practice 1 with Force India. In 2018, Russell secured the F2 title at the circuit with a win in the Feature Race. He went on to finish fourth in the Sprint Race on his final F2 appearance.
🇫🇷 Esteban OCON
From six appearances at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, Esteban Ocon has scored points four times. He finished eighth in 2017 with Force India, ninth in 2020 & 2021 and recorded his best result here to date last year, with seventh place. The 2018 race – his final appearance before his year out of the sport – is the only time that Ocon has failed to reach the end of the race at Yas Marina Circuit.
Ocon has reached Q3 at Yas Marina Circuit four times, qualifying in ninth place on three of those occasions. He set his best qualifying result at the circuit to date last year, with eighth place. Ocon just missed out on Q3 in 2020, qualifying in 11th. Ocon has not been out-qualified by a team-mate at the circuit since 2017.
🇫🇷 Pierre GASLY
With fifth place, Pierre Gasly recorded his best Abu Dhabi Grand Prix result to date in 2021. It’s one of two times that the Frenchman has picked up points at the circuit, having also finished eighth in 2020. Gasly recorded his only retirement at the track in 2018.
2020 is the only season in which Gasly has reached Q3 at Yas Marina Circuit. He was eliminated in Q1 on his first two appearances and qualified 12th in both 2019 and 2021. He recorded his third Q1 elimination at the track last year, where he was out-qualified by his team-mate for a third season in succession.
🇬🇧 Lando NORRIS
Lando Norris has scored points on all four appearances so far at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix. He finished eighth in 2019, before bettering that with a fifth place finish in 2020. In 2021, he came home in seventh place and he finished sixth last year.
Norris has a 100% Q3 record at Yas Marina Circuit, qualifying a best of third in 2021. He is yet to be out-qualified by a team-mate at the track.
Before F1, Norris made his F2 debut at the Yas Marina Circuit in 2017, making a one-off appearance before joining the series full time in 2018. That year, he finished fifth in the Feature Race and finished as runner-up on his final F2 appearance in the Sprint Race.
🇦🇺 Oscar PIASTRI
Oscar Piastri has previously raced at Yas Marina Circuit in the 2016-17 Formula 4 UAE Championship, in Formula Renault Eurocup in 2019 and in Formula 2 in 2021. Piastri has taken two wins in Abu Dhabi – one in 2019 and the other in F2, in the 2021 Feature Race. He also finished on the podium in the first Sprint Race that weekend.
🇫🇮 Valtteri BOTTAS
Valtteri Bottas has finished on the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix podium three times, including his only win so far at the circuit in 2017. There have been four occasions from his eight appearances at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix that Bottas has failed to score. 2022 was the first of those such occasions since 2016, when he failed to finish on his final appearance with Williams.
2021 was the first time since 2016 that Bottas did not qualify on the front row at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, while 2022 was the first time since 2016 that he did not reach Q3 at Yas Marina Circuit. He took pole position at the track in 2017.
2019 – when he finished fourth having started twentieth – and his drive from 18th to 15th in 2022 are the only times that Bottas has finished in a better position than where he started at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.
🇨🇳 ZHOU Guanyu
Zhou Guanyu finished 12th on his first appearance at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix last year. He out-qualified his team-mate, reaching Q2 and qualifying in 15th place.
Zhou previously raced at Yas Marina Circuit in the F3 Asia Championship, in which he won two races at the track. He also raced here in Formula 2 in 2019 and 2021. He recorded three podium finishes from his five F2 races at the circuit, winning the second Sprint Race of the 2021 weekend.
🇪🇸 Fernando ALONSO
Until 2022, Fernando Alonso held a 100% finish rate at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix. He had scored points on eight of his 11 appearances prior to last season. His best result here is second, which is where he finished in both 2011 and 2012.
Alonso has reached Q3 at the track five times, has been eliminated in Q2 five times and exited in Q1 twice. He has been eliminated in Q2 on all of his last four appearances here, qualifying in 11th place three times in that period.
The 2010 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, in which he lost the title to Sebastian Vettel, is the only race at the circuit in which he has lost more than one position from where he has started. Alonso has led only three laps here, doing so in 2011. Alonso made a hospital visit in 2013 after bouncing over the track’s kerbs at 150mph, suffering a 25G impact.
🇨🇦 Lance STROLL
Finishing in tenth place, Lance Stroll scored at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix for the first time in 2020. He bettered that result with eighth place in 2022. He failed to finish the race in 2019; his only retirement so far at Yas Marina Circuit.
2020 is the only time that Stroll has reached Q3 at Yas Marina Circuit, qualifying in eighth position. 2018 is the only year that Stroll has exited in Q1 at the track. Stroll has out-qualified his team-mate twice at the venue, in 2020 and 2021.
Stroll has gained positions from where he has started at Yas Marina Circuit only twice – in 2018, when he gained seven places, and in 2022, when he gained six places.
🇩🇰 Kevin MAGNUSSEN
Kevin Magnussen’s tenth place finish at the 2018 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix is the only time that he has picked up a point at Yas Marina Circuit. He has reached the chequered flag on all but one of his six appearances, having retired on his final outing with Renault in 2016.
Magnussen is yet to reach Q3 at the track, with a best qualifying result of 11th with McLaren in 2014. That year, he moved up two positions on the final grid due to grid penalties for other drivers. It’s his only top ten start so far in Abu Dhabi. He recorded his third Q1 exit at the track in 2022.
🇩🇪 Nico HULKENBERG
Nico Hulkenberg has picked up points on four of his nine appearances at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix. His best result here is sixth, recorded in 2014 and 2017. He has failed to finish twice, including in 2018 when his Renault car was flipped over on the opening lap.
Hulkenberg has qualified in the top ten on all but one of his last eight appearances at Yas Marina Circuit. His best qualifying result here is sixth, which he recorded in 2013. He moved up to fifth on the final grid that year.
🇯🇵 Yuki TSUNODA
Yuki Tsunoda recorded the best result of his rookie season at the 2021 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, coming home in fourth place. He failed to finish in the points here last year, coming home in 11th place.
Tsunoda has out-qualified his team-mate on both previous outings at Yas Marina Circuit, reaching Q3 with an eighth place qualification in 2021. He was eliminated in Q2 last season.
🇦🇺 Daniel RICCIARDO
Daniel Ricciardo has scored points on seven of his 12 previous appearances at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, with a best finish of fourth. Ricciardo finished fourth in both 2014 and 2018, with 2016 being his only other top five finish at the track.
There have been only two occasions that Ricciardo has failed to reach the chequered flag at Yas Marina Circuit. He retired in 2011 and failed to reach the finish line again in 2017.
2011, 2012 and 2020 are the only years in which Ricciardo has not qualified in the top ten for the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix. His only Q1 exit here to date came on his first appearance at the track with HRT in 2011. He has qualified tenth in each of the last two seasons. Ricciardo has been out-qualified by his team-mate in Abu Dhabi in all of the last three years, having never been out-qualified by a team-mate at the track before 2020.
🇹🇭 Alex ALBON
Alex Albon finished in the top six on both of his appearances at Yas Marina Circuit with Red Bull, with a best result of fourth in 2020. Last year, with Williams, Albon finished in 13th place.
Albon also qualified in the top six on both outings with Red Bull, but qualified on the back row in 2022. Last year was the first time Albon has out-qualified his team-mate at Yas Marina Circuit.
Albon previously raced at Yas Marina Circuit in both GP3 and F2. Albon retired from both GP3 races here in 2016, suffering a huge crash in the second race. His best result so far here came in F2 in 2017, where he finished as runner-up in the Sprint Race. In 2018, in F2, he finished fourteenth in the Feature Race and eighth in the Sprint Race.
🇺🇸 Logan SARGEANT
Logan Sargeant has previously raced at Yas Marina Circuit in the 2016-17 Formula 4 UAE Championship season and in Formula 2 in 2022. He confirmed his place in Formula 1 by securing the necessary superlicense points in the F2 season finale last year, finishing sixth in the Sprint Race and fifth in the Feature Race. The same weekend, Sargeant made an appearance with Williams at Yas Marina Circuit in Free Practice 1 at the 2022 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.