Lewis Hamilton wins F1 world title for fifth time

PUBLISHED: 21:03 28 October 2018 | UPDATED: 12:13 29 October 2018

Lewis Hamilton has won the 2018 Formula One World Drivers' Championship after the Mexican Grand Prix. Picture: Wolfgang Wilhelm for Daimler AG.

Lewis Hamilton has won the 2018 Formula One World Drivers' Championship after the Mexican Grand Prix. Picture: Wolfgang Wilhelm for Daimler AG.

© Steve Etherington for Mercedes-Benz Grand Prix Ltd.

Lewis Hamilton has won the Formula One World Drivers’ Championship for a fifth time – equalling the great Juan Manuel Fangio.

The 33-year-old Mercedes F1 driver from Hertfordshire finished today’s 2018 Mexican Grand Prix in fourth place to clinch the drivers’ title.

After the grand prix, Hamilton said: “It’s a very strange feeling right now.

“Honestly, I am just so grateful.

“To my family back home, I love you. Thank you for all the support.

“I wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for all the hard work my dad did and my family.

“It’s a very humbling experience.”

Hamilton started the race at the Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez track needing to finish seventh or higher to secure the championship, regardless of main rival Sebastian Vettel’s result.

In the end the Mercedes driver finished two places behind closest championship challenger Vettel in Mexico.

The German Ferrari star crossed the line second around the Mexico City circuit as Red Bull Racing’s Max Verstappen took the chequered flag.

Nevertheless, Hamilton’s fourth place behind Verstappen, Vettel and Kimi Raikkonen was enough to become only the third driver in the history of the sport to win five world titles.

His title success in Mexico lifts him level with Argentina’s Juan Manuel Fangio in motor racing’s pantheon.

Only the legendary Michael Schumacher has won more, with seven F1 championships – in 1994, 1995, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003 and 2004.

Former Stevenage schoolboy Hamilton won his first world title with McLaren in 2008, in only his second season in Formula One.

He had to wait until 2014 to claim his second crown after moving to Mercedes-AMG Petronas Motorsport.

Since then he has won three more.

Hamilton retained the title with the Silver Arrows in 2015, and won it again last season.

Sebastian Vettel congratulates Lewis Hamilton after the 2018 Mexican Grand Prix on Sunday. Picture: Wolfgang Wilhelm for Daimler AG.Sebastian Vettel congratulates Lewis Hamilton after the 2018 Mexican Grand Prix on Sunday. Picture: Wolfgang Wilhelm for Daimler AG.

He now has five to his name, four with Mercedes.

After the race, five-time world champion Hamilton said: “Honestly, it’s very hard to realise it at the moment.

“It’s something I dreamed of, but I never in a million years thought I’d be standing here today a five-time world champion.

“I never knew that was going to happen and I am just so grateful to everyone who has helped me be here.”

World champion Lewis Hamilton at the 2018 Mexican Grand Prix. Picture: Steve Etherington for Mercedes-Benz Grand Prix Ltd.World champion Lewis Hamilton at the 2018 Mexican Grand Prix. Picture: Steve Etherington for Mercedes-Benz Grand Prix Ltd.

He paid tribute to the Mexican crowd.

“I want to say a big thank you to all the fans here for making the Mexican Grand Prix as special as it is,” said Lewis.

“And I want to say a big thank you to my team. Bono said on the radio – the Championship wasn’t won here, it was won through a lot of hard work and through a lot of races.

“So, I am so grateful for all the hard work back home, for Petronad, for all our partners and ultimately for Mercedes.

Lewis Hamilton waves to the crowd in Mexico during the drivers' parade before the 2018 Mexican Grand Prix. Picture: Steve Etherington for Mercedes-Benz Grand Prix Ltd.Lewis Hamilton waves to the crowd in Mexico during the drivers' parade before the 2018 Mexican Grand Prix. Picture: Steve Etherington for Mercedes-Benz Grand Prix Ltd.

“I have been with Mercedes since I was 13, so to achieve the same thing Fangio had done with Mercedes so many years ago, is an incredible feeling and very surreal at the moment.”

Hamilton struggled to challenge the Red Bulls and Ferraris in Mexico, as he admitted.

“The race itself today was pretty horrible,” said Hamilton.

“I got a great start and was really working my way up, but then we were really struggling with the tyres, both Valtteri [Bottas] and I.

World champion Lewis Hamilton doing some wheel-spinning 'donuts' after the 2018 Mexican Grand Prix. Picture: Steve Etherington for Mercedes-Benz Grand Prix Ltd.World champion Lewis Hamilton doing some wheel-spinning 'donuts' after the 2018 Mexican Grand Prix. Picture: Steve Etherington for Mercedes-Benz Grand Prix Ltd.

“I was just trying to hold on and bring the car home.”

Hamilton has progressed from the streets of Stevenage and the kart track at Rye House to becoming one of the most successful drivers in Formula One.

He has scored more pole positions than any other F1 driver, and he is second on the all-time list of race wins, behind only Michael Schumacher.

Lewis also holds the record for most races with a single engine manufacturer, having started every single one of his 226 Formula One Grands Prix so far with a Mercedes-Benz engine.

Number 1: Lewis Hamilton celebrates clinching the world title at the 2018 Mexican Grand Prix. Picture: Wolfgang Wilhelm for Daimler AG.Number 1: Lewis Hamilton celebrates clinching the world title at the 2018 Mexican Grand Prix. Picture: Wolfgang Wilhelm for Daimler AG.

Lewis Hamilton doing some wheel-spinning 'donuts' after clinching the world title at the 2018 Mexican Grand Prix. Picture: Wolfgang Wilhelm for Daimler AG.Lewis Hamilton doing some wheel-spinning 'donuts' after clinching the world title at the 2018 Mexican Grand Prix. Picture: Wolfgang Wilhelm for Daimler AG.

Lewis Hamilton salutes the crowd at the 2018 Mexican Grand Prix. Picture: Wolfgang Wilhelm for Daimler AG.Lewis Hamilton salutes the crowd at the 2018 Mexican Grand Prix. Picture: Wolfgang Wilhelm for Daimler AG.

Lewis Hamilton celebares his world title success at the 2018 Mexican Grand Prix with Mercedes team members. Wolfgang Wilhelm / Daimler AG.Lewis Hamilton celebares his world title success at the 2018 Mexican Grand Prix with Mercedes team members. Wolfgang Wilhelm / Daimler AG.

Valtteri Bottas congratulates Lewis Hamilton on his fifth F1 world title after the 2018 Mexican Grand Prix. Picture: Paul Ripke / Daimler AG.Valtteri Bottas congratulates Lewis Hamilton on his fifth F1 world title after the 2018 Mexican Grand Prix. Picture: Paul Ripke / Daimler AG.

Mercedes team-mates Valtteri Bottas and Lewis Hamilton after the 2018 Mexican Grand Prix. Picture: Paul Ripke /Daimler AG/Mercedes team-mates Valtteri Bottas and Lewis Hamilton after the 2018 Mexican Grand Prix. Picture: Paul Ripke /Daimler AG/

Five-time world F1 champion Lewis Hamilton after the 2018 Mexican Grand Prix. Picture: Wolfgang Wilhelm for Daimler AGFive-time world F1 champion Lewis Hamilton after the 2018 Mexican Grand Prix. Picture: Wolfgang Wilhelm for Daimler AG

World champion Lewis Hamilton laps up the adulation after winning his fifth F1 title at the 2018 Mexican Grand Prix. Wolfgang Wilhelm for Daimler AGWorld champion Lewis Hamilton laps up the adulation after winning his fifth F1 title at the 2018 Mexican Grand Prix. Wolfgang Wilhelm for Daimler AG

Lewis Hamilton crossed the finish line fourth in the 2018 Mexican Grand Prix. Picture: Wolfgang Wilhelm for Daimler AGLewis Hamilton crossed the finish line fourth in the 2018 Mexican Grand Prix. Picture: Wolfgang Wilhelm for Daimler AG

Lewis Hamilton on his way to fourth place in the 2018 Mexican Grand Prix. Picture: Wolfgang Wilhelm for Daimler AGLewis Hamilton on his way to fourth place in the 2018 Mexican Grand Prix. Picture: Wolfgang Wilhelm for Daimler AG

Lewis Hamilton on track during the 2018 Mexican Grand Prix. Picture: Wolfgang Wilhelm for Daimler AG.Lewis Hamilton on track during the 2018 Mexican Grand Prix. Picture: Wolfgang Wilhelm for Daimler AG.

The drivers line up for the 2018 Mexican  Grand Prix on Sunday. Picture: Paul RipkeThe drivers line up for the 2018 Mexican Grand Prix on Sunday. Picture: Paul Ripke

Lewis Hamilton is as good on two wheels as he is on four. Picture: Paul RipkeLewis Hamilton is as good on two wheels as he is on four. Picture: Paul Ripke

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