Breaking News
LAST CHANCE for Cyber Monday SALE: Up to 54% off InvestingPro! Register here
Investing Pro 0
Ad-Free Version. Upgrade your Investing.com experience. Save up to 40% More details

Motor racing-Same champions, new winners in strangest F1 season

Sports & GeneralDec 15, 2020 09:26PM ET
Saved. See Saved Items.
This article has already been saved in your Saved Items
 
5/5 © Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Bahrain Grand Prix 2/5

By Alan Baldwin

LONDON (Reuters) - Formula One's pandemic-hit season was packed with novelty and surprises, even if Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes retained their titles in record style and by massive margins once racing returned.

The strangest of campaigns crammed 17 races, instead of the record 22 originally envisaged, into little more than five months from July with four triple-headers.

Races were held behind closed doors for the first time, with teams operating in 'bubbles' to protect against COVID-19, but the season delivered more than might have been expected when the planned Australian opener was cancelled in March.

Races in places not visited before, two first-time winners and Romain Grosjean's 'miracle' escape from a fiery crash in Bahrain that split his car in two provided sensational storylines.

Three drivers caught the novel coronavirus, including Hamilton after he had won his record-equalling seventh title, but the show stayed on the road.

Some 80,000 PCR tests were carried out but fewer than 100 were positive.

The sport showed it was quick to adapt in other ways too, teams turning their hands to designing and producing thousands of hospital ventilators in otherwise shuttered factories during the early months of the year.

Italy hosted three races -- a first for the sport -- and there were new formats and untested layouts with several circuits hosting two rounds.

Glamour showcase races in Monaco and Singapore were binned, as well as what would have been the first Vietnamese Grand Prix, as Formula One kept it simple and stayed in Europe and the Middle East.

RECORDS BROKEN

Records were broken all over the place, Hamilton breezing past Michael Schumacher's benchmark 91 wins -- ending the year on 95 -- and matching the Ferrari (NYSE:RACE) ace's seven titles.

The Briton, now the most successful driver of all time, won 11 races and used his platform to highlight injustice -- taking a knee before each race in a Black Lives Matter shirt and campaigning for greater diversity.

The Silverstone pit straight was renamed after Hamilton as the 35-year-old ended the year with more points than the second-placed Red Bull team's drivers combined and with 124 more than second-placed Finnish team mate Valtteri Bottas.

Mercedes, who secured both championships for an unprecedented seventh year in a row, won 13 races and took pole position in all but two.

Mexican Sergio Perez contracted COVID-19 -- replaced by super-sub Nico Hulkenberg for two races -- but ended the longest wait for a win with victory in his 190th start, going from last to first around the Bahrain circuit's outer loop.

Ferrari, the sport's most successful team, joined the others in signing a new commercial 'Concorde Agreement' and celebrated their 1,000th race in the first held at Mugello.

They also suffered their worst season since 1980, without a win and sixth overall, and said goodbye to four times champion Sebastian Vettel who moves to what was Racing Point and will be Aston Martin.

Going the other way, McLaren -- with new U.S.-based investors and Australian Daniel Ricciardo joining next year -- returned to the top three behind Mercedes and Red Bull.

The latter won twice with Max Verstappen, including the Abu Dhabi season-ender that raised hopes for a more competitive 2021.

Italy-based AlphaTauri also shone, with Frenchman Pierre Gasly taking an emotional first win at Monza.

Former champions Williams (NYSE:WMB), the founding family departing after selling to U.S.-based Dorilton Capital, failed to score for the first time since the 1970s.

Their driver George Russell still starred, the youngster joining Mercedes for the Sakhir Grand Prix and nearly winning as stand-in for Hamilton who was sidelined by COVID-19.

The 22-year-old Briton's hopes were dashed by Mercedes making a rare pitstop error before a late puncture but he emerged with his name even more firmly on the list of ones to watch.

Motor racing-Same champions, new winners in strangest F1 season
 

Related Articles

Add a Comment

Comment Guidelines

We encourage you to use comments to engage with other users, share your perspective and ask questions of authors and each other. However, in order to maintain the high level of discourse we’ve all come to value and expect, please keep the following criteria in mind:  

  •            Enrich the conversation, don’t trash it.

  •           Stay focused and on track. Only post material that’s relevant to the topic being discussed. 

  •           Be respectful. Even negative opinions can be framed positively and diplomatically. Avoid profanity, slander or personal attacks directed at an author or another user. Racism, sexism and other forms of discrimination will not be tolerated.

  • Use standard writing style. Include punctuation and upper and lower cases. Comments that are written in all caps and contain excessive use of symbols will be removed.
  • NOTE: Spam and/or promotional messages and comments containing links will be removed. Phone numbers, email addresses, links to personal or business websites, Skype/Telegram/WhatsApp etc. addresses (including links to groups) will also be removed; self-promotional material or business-related solicitations or PR (ie, contact me for signals/advice etc.), and/or any other comment that contains personal contact specifcs or advertising will be removed as well. In addition, any of the above-mentioned violations may result in suspension of your account.
  • Doxxing. We do not allow any sharing of private or personal contact or other information about any individual or organization. This will result in immediate suspension of the commentor and his or her account.
  • Don’t monopolize the conversation. We appreciate passion and conviction, but we also strongly believe in giving everyone a chance to air their point of view. Therefore, in addition to civil interaction, we expect commenters to offer their opinions succinctly and thoughtfully, but not so repeatedly that others are annoyed or offended. If we receive complaints about individuals who take over a thread or forum, we reserve the right to ban them from the site, without recourse.
  • Only English comments will be allowed.

Perpetrators of spam or abuse will be deleted from the site and prohibited from future registration at Investing.com’s discretion.

Write your thoughts here
 
Are you sure you want to delete this chart?
 
Post
Post also to:
 
Replace the attached chart with a new chart ?
1000
Your ability to comment is currently suspended due to negative user reports. Your status will be reviewed by our moderators.
Please wait a minute before you try to comment again.
Thanks for your comment. Please note that all comments are pending until approved by our moderators. It may therefore take some time before it appears on our website.
 
Are you sure you want to delete this chart?
 
Post
 
Replace the attached chart with a new chart ?
1000
Your ability to comment is currently suspended due to negative user reports. Your status will be reviewed by our moderators.
Please wait a minute before you try to comment again.
Add Chart to Comment
Confirm Block

Are you sure you want to block %USER_NAME%?

By doing so, you and %USER_NAME% will not be able to see any of each other's Investing.com's posts.

%USER_NAME% was successfully added to your Block List

Since you’ve just unblocked this person, you must wait 48 hours before renewing the block.

Report this comment

I feel that this comment is:

Comment flagged

Thank You!

Your report has been sent to our moderators for review
Disclaimer: Fusion Media would like to remind you that the data contained in this website is not necessarily real-time nor accurate. All CFDs (stocks, indexes, futures) and Forex prices are not provided by exchanges but rather by market makers, and so prices may not be accurate and may differ from the actual market price, meaning prices are indicative and not appropriate for trading purposes. Therefore Fusion Media doesn`t bear any responsibility for any trading losses you might incur as a result of using this data.

Fusion Media or anyone involved with Fusion Media will not accept any liability for loss or damage as a result of reliance on the information including data, quotes, charts and buy/sell signals contained within this website. Please be fully informed regarding the risks and costs associated with trading the financial markets, it is one of the riskiest investment forms possible.
Continue with Google
or
Sign up with Email