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Lewis Hamilton joins F1 legends by doing it his way and not by imitation | Richard Williams


Mercedes maestro has complimented his adherence to grand prix track etiquette with a trail-blazing love of rap music and fashion design

As Lewis Hamilton has just discovered, five is a magical number in motor racing. It means one thing and one thing only. It is the number of times Juan Manuel Fangio won the drivers’ world championship in Formula One between 1951 and 1957. For almost half a century, that feat looked as likely to be equalled as Don Bradman’s Test average. Like the Australian genius, the Argentinian maestro enjoyed an eminence setting him apart not just from his contemporaries but from those who preceded and those who followed his era.

Then along came Michael Schumacher, who rewrote every significant record – number of pole positions (68), number of race wins (91), number of championships (seven) – except one. Between 1991 and 2012, Schumacher started 306 grands prix, and won 29.74% of them. An impressive figure but it cannot compare with Fangio’s figure of 24 wins from 51 races, giving an average of 41.38%.

Related: Lewis Hamilton says 2018 F1 world title ‘is definitely my best year’

Related: Lewis Hamilton’s fifth title seals his place in the pantheon of F1 greats | John Watson

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