2024-Australian-GP-start-Verstappen-leads-Sainz-Norris-Leclerc-Photo-Red-Bull

Carlos Sainz’s win and the retirement of Max Verstappen, Lewis Hamilton and George Russell ended some pretty incredible results sequences, but some have continued, one of which lasts almost 16 years.

When Verstappen ran into problems with the stuck rear right brake, which forced him to retire already in the lap four, it was clear that we were in for an unusual race, since Verstappen had not retired in two years.

In those two years, from the 2022 Australian Grand Prix, Verstappen won 35 of the 43 races held, but Ferrari in Sainz’s hands looked like they would have at least given Verstappen a hard time had the Dutchman wasn’t forced out.

Verstappen’s retirement ended several sequences the three-time world champion was in, but those weren’t the only sequences that came to an end at this year’s Australian Grand Prix.

Verstappen – 9 wins

Verstappen won the last seven races of last season and the first two races of this season, meaning that in Australia he was aiming to equal his own record of ten wins in a row, which he achieved last year from Miami to Monza.

Verstappen – 43 races in points

From the 2022 Australian Grand Prix to the Australian Grand Prix, Verstappen has consistently scored points, a sequencesof 43 races, his best such streak of his career.

Only one man won points in more races in a row, and that is Hamilton, who finished in the top ten in 48 consecutive races (2018 British Grand Prix – 2020 Bahrain Grand Prix).

Hamilton – 24 races in points

The seven-time world champion was also on a good points streak, but a power unit failure forced him out of the race as early as lap 15.

With this 24-race points sequence, Hamilton shares fifth place all-time with Michael Schumacher, but the Briton has two better sequences – 33 races in a row (Japanese GP 2016 – French GP 2018, third all-time) and 48 consecutive points race (2018 British GP – 2020 Bahrain GP, longest streak in history).

Leclerc – 7 races starting from the front row

2024 Bahrain GP start – Verstappen and Leclerc share the front row (Photo: Red Bull)

The Ferrari driver looked to be Verstappen’s main challenger on Friday, but his chances fell apart spectacularly on Saturday when he failed miserably in qualifying and started only fifth.

This was particularly surprising because Leclerc had started from the front row in the seven races before that, often when Ferrari was less competitive than last weekend in Australia.

The record holder is Senna, who started first or second in 24 races in a row (German GP 1988 – Australian GP 1989), and Hamilton is the owner of the second longest such streak – 20 races (Belgian GP 2014 – Italian GP 2015).

Mercedes – 62 races in points

Thanks to their double exit in Australia, Mercedes ended their 62-race points streak as a team, dating back to the 2021 French GP – they last went without a point at the 2021 Azerbaijan GP.

Still running sequences

There are quite a lot of such strings, but we will mention only the most important ones.

Leclerc – 12 races in points

After the streaks of Verstappen and Hamilton were ended, Leclerc is currently on the longest points streak since Monza last year. Although he was disqualified in Austin and did not start in Brazil, Leclerc also won points in the sprint in those weekends, so he continued the aforementioned streak.

Verstappen – 10 races in the lead

Although it is difficult to draw anything positive from the retirement, in Australia Verstappen was again in the lead (only in the first lap) and continued his streak of 10 races in which he led at least one lap.

The absolute record holder is Hamilton with 18 races in a row in the lead (2014 Hungarian Grand Prix – 2015 Great British Grand Prix), and Verstappen’s best streak is 12 races in the lead (2023 Australian Grand Prix – 2023 Italian Grand Prix).

Red Bull – 46 races in points

Perez’s fifth place (10 points) saved Red Bull from continuing their points streak and prevented Ferrari from taking the lead in the constructors’ standings.

Ferrari is on a 22-race points streak, McLaren has won points in the last 17 races, Aston Martin in the last six, and Haas in the last two.

Mercedes (engine manufacturer) – 303 races in points

2024 Mercedes F1 W15 proved to be slower than expected (Photo: Daimler)

Arguably the most impressive streak that is still running is that of Mercedes-powered cars which are almost 16 years consistently in the points.

It started at the 2008 Chinese Grand Prix (where Hamilton convincingly won ahead of the season finale in Brazil), but the key to such a run was the fact that Mercedes had supplied engines to both Brawn GP and Force India since 2009 after their engines were used only by McLaren cars from 1995.

Before the 2010 season, Mercedes bought Brawn GP and kept the number of teams with their engines at three (Mercedes, McLaren and Force India), and since 2014, Mercedes has four teams that use them because Williams also started using their power units.

For the next six years (2015 – 2020), McLaren used Honda and Renault power units, but Mercedes supplied its engines to Lotus in 2015 and Manor in 2016 so they had four teams in those two years as well.

Just three seasons into the hybrid era (2017 – 2020) Mercedes had three teams (Mercedes, Force India / Racing Point and Williams), but with the return of McLaren, Mercedes has four teams again from 2021, so their points winning streak is even more secure.

It’s really hard to imagine a race where Mercedes, McLaren, Williams and Aston Martin all end up without points so Mercedes’ points streak as an engine manufacturer is likely to continue for years to come.

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