Lewis Hamilton celebrated his fifth Formula One world championship and joined an elite trio of greats after a Mexican Grand Prix won by Red Bull’s Max Verstappen for the second year in a row.
The Mercedes driver, who equalled the five titles of late 1950s Argentine great Juan Manuel Fangio with only seven-time champion Michael Schumacher above them, finished fourth while Ferrari rival Sebastian Vettel was second. Hamilton had needed only five points to be sure of the title while four-time champion Vettel had to win to have any hope of denying the Briton.
“It’s something I dreamed of, but I never in a million years thought I’d stand here as a five-time champion,” said the 33-year-old. “I’m so grateful for everyone who helped me be here, to raise the bar and lift the cup. It wasn’t won here, just throughout the season and a lot of hard work,” he added after doing smoking ‘donuts’ in front of a 130,000-strong crowd who witnessed a rare race without a Mercedes driver standing on the podium. “To complete this when Fangio did it with Mercedes is an incredible feeling and very surreal.”
Team boss Toto Wolff hailed Hamilton as a well-deserved champion. “He has really been the dominant driver this year,” said the Austrian. Ferrari’s Kimi Raikkonen was third, meaning the constructors’ championship remained open at least until the Brazilian GP in two weeks’ time with Mercedes’s lead trimmed.