Absolute statistical frenzy

September 24, 2008

You might have been expecting me to wiffle on about Lewis Hamilton or the impending excitement of Formula 1’s first night race, but I’ve had enough of all of that.  Especially the former.  The amount of conspiracy theories that have sprung forth since Lewis Hamilton didn’t win the Belgian Grand Prix have made me question the legitimacy of a project like this one.  Like a little rock in a stream though, I’m going to sit it out.  In order to do this, what I always do is seek solace in my numbers.

For a quite shameful number of years, I have kept Formula 1 driver career records.  When I was really insane, I used to keep team records too, but only the drivers have managed to keep my interest into my dotage.  At times of extremis, I plan to whack out a few statistical updates to titillate your stat glands. Today, I’ll be looking at the careers of the 20 current Grand Prix drivers.  For comparative purposes, I’ll also be including the record of Michael Schumacher, nearly always the standard setter for these things.

Winners

Twelve of the current crop of twenty have won a Grand Prix.

  1. Fernando Alonso has won 19, representing 16.10% of his total starts
  2. Kimi Räikkönen  17 (11.85%)
  3. David Coulthard  13 (4.96%)
  4. Felipe Massa  10 (12.75%)
  5. Rubens Barrichello  9 (4.92%)
  6. Lewis Hamilton 8 (35.48%)
  7. Giancarlo Fisichella  3 (0.96%)

Five drivers have won a single Grand Prix: Jenson Button (@ 2.01%); Heikki Kovalainen (3.23%); Robert Kubica (2.78%); Jarno Trulli (1.53%) and Sebastian Vettel (4.55%).

Michael Schumacher won 91 Grands Prix (record) at 36.69%.  Fernando Alonso’s 19 wins puts him 12th in the all-time list.

Non-winners

Not everyone can win, as my nan always told me.  Here’s the eight people who are still waiting, listed in order of Grand Prix starts.

  1. Nick Heidfeld  147 (years: 2000 – present; best finish: seven 2nd places)
  2. Mark Webber 117 (2002 – present; two 3rds)
  3. Nico Rosberg  49 (2006 – present; one 3rd)
  4. Adrian Sutil  31 (2007 – present; one 8th)
  5. Timo Glock  18 (2004, 2008 – present; one 2nd)
  6. Kazuki Nakajima  15 (2007 – present; one 6th)
  7. Nelson Angelo Piquet  14 (2008 – present; one 2nd)
  8. Sebastien Bourdais 14 (2008 – present; two 7ths)

The record here belongs to Andrea de Cesaris (208 starts, two 2nd places). Nick Heidfeld’s 147 starts without a win puts him 4th in the all-time standings.  I bet he’s pleased.

Points scorers

Points mean prizes.  Wins just clutter up your garage with trinkets.  Here’s the top ten overall points scorers, followed by the top ten in terms of points-per-starts ratio.

  1. David Coulthard  533 points
  2. Rubens Barrichello  530
  3. Fernando Alonso  518
  4. Kimi Räikkönen  507
  5. Felipe Massa  278
  6. Giancarlo Fisichella  267
  7. Jenson Button  232
  8. Jarno Trulli  209
  9. Nick Heidfeld  193
  10. Lewis Hamilton  187

Michael Schumacher scored 1369 points (record).  David Coulthard’s total puts him 4th in the all-time list.

  1. Lewis Hamilton  6.03 points-per-start
  2. Fernando Alonso  4.39
  3. Kimi Räikkönen  3.76
  4. Robert Kubica  3.03
  5. Felipe Massa  2.73
  6. Heikki Kovalainen  2.61
  7. David Coulthard  2.20
  8. Rubens Barrichello  2.01
  9. Jenson Button  1.56
  10. Nick Heidfeld  1.31

Michael Schumacher scored at 5.52 points per start.  Lewis Hamilton is the current record holder.

Starts

Because you can’t get rid of some people.

  1. Rubens Barrichello  264 starts from 1993 – present
  2. David Coulthard  242 (1994 – present)
  3. Giancarlo Fisichella  208 (1996 – present)
  4. Jarno Trulli 196 (1997 – present)
  5. Jenson Button  149 (2000 – present)

Michael Schumacher started 248 Grands Prix, which puts him 3rd in the all-time list.  Rubens Barrichello is the record holder.

Pole positions and Fastest laps

Because some people’s favourite Michael Jackson song is Speed Demon.

  1. Fernando Alonso  17 pole positions representing 14.41% of his total starts
  2. Kimi Räikkönen  16 (11.85%)
  3. Felipe Massa  13 (12.75%)
  4. Rubens Barrichello  13 (4.92%)
  5. David Coulthard  12 (4.96%)

Michael Schumacher won 68 pole positions (record).  Fernando Alonso’s 17 puts him 11th.

  1. Kimi Räikkönen  34 fastest laps
  2. David Coulthard  18
  3. Rubens Barrichello  15
  4. Fernando Alonso  10
  5. Felipe Massa  9

Michael Schumacher took 76 fastest laps (record). Kimi Räikkönen’s 34 is the third highest of all time.  He needs just two more in 2008 to break the record he and Schumacher jointly hold for most fastest laps in a single season (10).

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