Red Bull Racing Honda racer , Max Verstappen , successfully won the 2021 Formula 1 world title after winning the race at Yas Marina Circuit , Abu Dhabi, Sunday (12/12/2021), defeating seven-time world champion, Lewis Hamilton, right on the last lap.
Verstappen, who started from pole, was immediately overtaken by Hamilton on the straight after the start. The two then collided at Turn 7. Hamilton went wide and cut the corner, but was not punished despite being asked by the FIA Stewards to reduce Verstappen’s margin of advantage.
On Lap 53, Hamilton was still in the lead and had a margin of about 11.5 seconds over Verstappen. However, Nicholas Latifi hit the dividing wall and invited the Safety Car. Red Bull also asked Verstappen to make a pit stop on Lap 54 to change the hard to soft tires. On Lap 57, Hamilton and Verstappen side by side.
The Safety Car then went into the pits and the green flag was flown at the start of Lap 58. Verstappen then overtook Hamilton and took the lead at Turn 5. They almost collided on the straight, but Verstappen was able to hold on to first place until the finish flag was flown. Thus, he became world champion.
There are nine interesting facts behind Verstappen’s success in winning F1 2021. What are they? Here’s the review.
First World Champion From Holland
1) This is the first time the F1 world title has been decided in the closing series since 2016. At that time, Nico Rosberg won the world title, defeating Lewis Hamilton who is also his tandem at Mercedes AMG Petronas.
2) In F1 history, this is the second time that the winner has been determined in the closing series with both candidates collecting equal points. The first occurred in 1974, when Emerson Fittipaldi and Clay Regazzoni had 52 points ahead of the US Grand Prix. Fittipaldi won after finishing fourth, while Regazzoni finished 11th.
3) With this world title, Max Verstappen has become the first Dutch driver to win a world title in F1 history.
Honda’s 30 Years of Waiting
4) Capturing the world title at the age of 24 years and 73 days, Max Verstappen became the fourth youngest world champion in history, behind Sebastian Vettel, Lewis Hamilton and Fernando Alonso. All four will compete in F1 2022.
5) Max Verstappen also became the first non-Mercedes driver to win the title since 2013. In addition, he also became the first Red Bull Racing driver to win the title since Sebastian Vettel, also in 2013.
6) This is also the first drivers’ world title for Honda in F1 since 1991. At that time, they won the title through Ayrton Senna who defended McLaren Honda. It is also Honda’s sixth driver’s world title in F1 history.
Red Bull Racing Honda Fails To Become Constructors’ Champion
7) With Max Verstappen as champion, Lewis Hamilton missed his eighth world title, keeping his record and Michael Schumacher equal to seven world titles.
8) Throughout this season, Verstappen collected 18 podiums, 10 wins, 6 fastest laps and 10 poles.
9) Although Verstappen won the drivers’ world title, unfortunately Red Bull Racing Honda failed to win the constructors’ world title. They had to settle for being runners-up behind Mercedes, with 28 points behind.