Lewis Hamilton won his sixth F1 world championship in the US grand Prix. He becomes only the second person to ever do so. Everyone who witnessed the win saw history in the making. This also extended Mercedes’s dominance in the world of F1.
A title won by Grit and cleverness
2019 wasn’t like the rest of the titles won by Lewis Hamilton. He didn’t have the best car on the track on more than half of the races. On top of this, he hasn’t had a moment of brilliance yet, like the opening lap in Monza 2018 or qualifying in Singapore. Instead, he had to fight it out in the sun with other drivers. Often finishing with clever strategy, squeezing more laps from the tyres, or mistake from other drivers.
It wasn’t a scratch title as he won with two races remaining, but he wasn’t a dominating one as well. This is a mark of champions who can win by flair and also by grinding it deep and winning ugly. Hamilton exactly did that in 2019. But if you just look at the stats, he has won 10 races in 2019, 60 more points than anyone, and is clearly far ahead than everyone else.
US Grand Prix 2019
The US Grand Prix is a perfect example of what Hamilton did in the whole season. He was fourth on the pole, but a good start saw him rise to second. While all the other drivers went in for two pit stop race, Hamilton decided for a single pit stop. In Lap 23, the engineer requested him to come in because of his box, but he stayed one extra lap to get the most out.
With 20 laps to go, Both Vottas and Verstappen were on fresh tyres and could easily catch him. However, he just put his head down and race. Although he couldn’t stop Vottas, he still came second and won the title. In short, he won due to the mistakes of other drivers, getting the max out of his tyres and his clever strategy.
The new era of dominance
Hamilton winning six F1 Driver’s World Championship is definitely an achievement, but there is something special about it. Hamilton was young when he made his F1 debut in a time when Alonso was dominating F1. He survived it and also won a championship. After this came the Vettel era, when he won four consecutive titles.
The flamboyant little boy from England has definitely made his name in the world of F1 for as long as F1 is talked about.
Hamilton vs. Schumacher
Hamilton has already created history by winning the sixth F1 championship, and he is just one behind the king of F1, Michael Schumacher. So, now the question on everyone’s mind is will Hamilton wins another championship or more and over Schumacher’s record. Another record which Hamilton is eyeing is beating Schumacher record of winning 91 races as he is just 8 behind, which means another glory.
As we can clearly see, it is not impossible, the record is very much insight. However, Mercedes still have a few issues in the car and they lack behind Ferrari in many aspects. But, Lewis Hamilton has been defying expectations ever since he drove the McLaren in his first season. So, you never know!
The road ahead
After winning the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, Hamilton would like to continue the winning run in the next season. But his contract expires in 2020. He said in an interview that he would like to continue even after 2020 and see the new regulation in play. When asked about his commitment to Mercedes, he said he has been with them for 13 years, even before F1. Hence, he has no intention of leaving them.
But there is also an age factor here which we need to take into consideration. He will be 35 years old at the start of next season, he has max 2 to 3 years on the top, and with upcoming drivers, the road might not be easy for Hamilton.
Clearly, we are talking about Charles Leclerc, the young Monégasque driver move to Ferrari was seamless as he was on pole for a lot of race. He definitely looks the next big thing. If Ferrari can get its acts together, Leclerc and Vettel are automatically the favorites for next year.
Winning six F1 championship and five in a row is no ordinary achievement. Lewis Hamilton is clearly one of the best drivers in F1 history. The scary part (for others) is he still has a few years to go. So, all of us just have to wait and see where he ends up and hangs his boots.
Photo taken from Skysports.com