The Russian Grand Prix at Sochi Autodrom is typically a Formula 1 race dominated by Mercedes-AMG Petronas Motorsport. They entered this year’s running of the race with five victories in five attempts, and they were the favorites to get the job done once again.
But Scuderia Ferrari continued their recently improved form to open up the race weekend.
But a collection of errors and misfortune ultimately resulted in Vettel’s retirement and Leclerc being forced back to third place behind Mercedes teammates Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas without much chance of winning. Unsurprisingly, Hamilton went on to win the race ahead of Bottas in second, giving the Silver Arrows their eighth 1-2 finish through the first 16 races of the 21-race 2019 season.
It’s no secret that Hamilton is chasing the all-time wins and championships records, both of which held by Michael Schumacher. Schumacher won 91 races and seven championships in his career.
Hamilton entered the Russian Grand Prix with 81 victories and five championships, although he is a virtual lock to win his sixth championship this year, and he is now just nine wins away from tying Schumacher’s wins record after securing his 82nd victory.
But when he took the lead upon Vettel making his pit stop on lap 26, he broke another record that had been held by Schumacher, and quite a notable one at that.
Hamilton entered the race having led at least one lap in 142 in his 244 previous Formula 1 starts. Schumacher’s career ended with him having led at least one lap in 142 of his 306 starts.
When Hamilton led lap 26 of the Russian Grand Prix, a race he has only ever won when he leads at least one lap (four times now), he broke this record, as this race became the 143rd race that he has led throughout his 13-year Formula 1 career.
Only three other drivers aside of Schumacher and Vettel have led more than half the amount of races that Hamilton has, and only one of them, Kimi Raikkonen with 83, is an active driver. The next highest active driver on this list behind Raikkonen is Valtteri Bottas with 23.
Source: Beyond the Flag