“Will there be no domination in the most eminent class of auto-racing known to manhood? Seven races and seven drivers conquering the checkered flag”. An unanticipated thought came to me when Lewis Hamilton of Britain raced past the checkered flag as he won the Canadian Grand Prix 2012. The thought was bewildering because all the F1 fanatics have seen some sort of supremacy of legends over the years. Juan Manuel Fangio reined the racing circuit during the initial phase of the sport. In seven Formula One seasons, he was World Champion five times and runner-up twice. Then there were legends such as Jack Brabham and Jim Clark in the 60s, Jacky Stewart in the early 70s, Nikki Lauda in the late 70’s, Alain Prost and Nelson Piquet in the 80s, Ayrton Senna in the early 90s, and the there was the ‘Michael Schumacher era’. He is considered to be the finest driver of the fastest form of circuit racing. After Schumacher, I don’t think that there has been any kind of influence of a single driver in this sport.
Still, there are a couple of drivers who are talented enough to rule in the near future. The amazing success of Lewis Hamilton and Sebestian Vettel in such a short period makes them the most likely to be termed as the ‘Juan Manuel Fangio’ of this generation.
In his very first season in 2007, he finished second, just one point behind Kimi Raikkonen and won the World Championship in the subsequent year. He has always been in the top 5 of the Drivers rankings. This year, the British driver is leading the race for the Championship title with 88 points, two points ahead of Fernando Alonso of Spain. He has won 18 out 98 races and has occupied the podium finish 45 times with a success rate of 45.91%. This criterion makes him the all-time fifth best driver in the history of the sport. The top four in the list are Juan Manuel Fangio, Alain Prost, Michael Schumacher and Ayrton Senna respectively. I still remember him quoting “I was born to race and to win”, after he attained the first pole-position of his career.
He debuted alongside Lewis Hamilton in 2007. He has won 22 races and has 38 podium finishes to his name. At present, the German racing driver drives for Red Bull. In 2009, he finished his first season with Red Bull as the youngest-ever World Drivers’ championship runner-up. In 2010, he went on to become the youngest driver ever to win the Championship. This season he ranks third in the list, just one point behind Fernando Alonso. His consistency makes him one of the best drivers of this generation. He holds the record for the most number of pole positions in a season. His accuracy, flawlessness, concentration and the dedication he possess, makes him the most terrific racer of the current generation.