British racer Lewis Hamilton secured his 5th Formula 1 World Championship title, and his fourth in the last five years, with a 4th place finish in the Mexican Grand Prix.
The Mercedes-AMG driver went into the event knowing that seventh place would secure the title, while Ferrari rival Sebastian Vettel needed to win. Despite a strong start, Hamilton struggled with his tyres in the race and could only finish fourth. Verstappen took a comfortable race win, while Vettel battled hard to take second.
Hamilton said he had mixed feelings taking the title after what he admitted was a “horrible” race where he was just “trying to hold on and bring the car home”.
But he added: “I don’t really allow myself to be too emotional in public, but I feel very, very humbled by the whole experience. It’s something that I dreamed of, but never in a million years did I think I’d be standing here today as a five-time world champion.”
Hamilton, 33, has now tied Juan Manuel Fangio for second place on the all-time list with five championships, behind only seven-time title winner Michael Schumacher.
Hamilton secured his first title driving for McLaren-Mercedes in 2008, in only his second season in the sport. He switched to the works Mercedes squad for 2013, taking his second title in 2014. He has won four of the last five titles, only narrowly missing out to team-mate Nico Rosberg in 2016.
While Hamilton has benefitted from having a dominant car most years since 2014, he faced a strong challenge this year from Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel. The four-time champion led Hamilton by eight points after ten of this year’s 21 races, but Hamilton then put in a stunning run of form, including four wins in a row, while Vettel was involved in a number of incidents, to build a substantial points lead.
Be sure to watch the Brazilian Grand Prix which is the second last race of 2018 on November the 11th.