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Hamilton’s championship showdown and Interlagos chaos: F1’s most bizarre wins

Hamilton’s championship showdown and Interlagos chaos: F1’s most bizarre wins

Hamilton’s championship showdown and Interlagos chaos: F1’s most bizarre wins

Hamilton’s championship showdown and Interlagos chaos: F1’s most bizarre wins

F1 recently welcomed a new winner into its history books, with Lando Norris claiming a maiden victory at the Miami Grand Prix.

Whilst Lando’s win was a welcome change from the Dutch national anthem, it was a classic victory, perfectly timing a pit stop with the safety car to take the win.

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However, throughout F1 history there have been plenty of wins produced in more bizarre circumstances.

Here is our top selection of the strangest F1 wins.

Italian Grand Prix (1971)- Peter Gethin

Peter Gethin is a name relegated to the annals of F1 history as one of its largely forgotten drivers.

However, for one brief shining moment in the Italian sun, Gethin was an F1 race winner.

Five cars were in contention for a victory during the closing stages of the 1971 Italian Grand Prix.

Gethin found himself battling the likes of Ronnie Peterson and François Cevert, in a race where only ten drivers finished.

Nevertheless, the Brit emerged triumphant, finding himself slightly ahead on the line to win by the smallest margin in F1 history - 0.01 seconds!

The top five were separated by 0.61 seconds, but for Gethin this was his last taste of F1 glory and he never finished higher than P6 ever again.

Australian Grand Prix (1994)- Nigel Mansell

Michael Schumacher in his Benetton in 1994

Nigel Mansell may have claimed pole position in Adelaide, but the events leading towards his victory are enough to make this list.

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Adelaide hosted the 1994 world championship finale, with Michael Schumacher on 92 points and rival Damon Hill close behind on 91.

Schumacher initially took the lead, with Hill following behind in second for most of the race, until the Benetton hit the wall on lap 36.

As Schumacher attempted to return to the track, Hill tried to overtake him, but Schumacher steered towards the Brit in a race-ending move.

Hill headed into the pit where the damage to his car was extensive, forcing him to retire from the race.

Nigel Mansell was the eventual race winner, however the incident between the two championship rivals was the main talking point.

Schumacher achieved his first world title in Adelaide, but it was not without controversy with suggestions he hit Hill on purpose.

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British Grand Prix (2020)- Lewis Hamilton

Lewis Hamilton took his seventh British Grand Prix win in 2020

The idea of Lewis Hamilton winning a race is not exactly bizarre, but the nature of his 2020 British Grand Prix victory certainly was.

It had been a classic hybrid era outing, with the two Mercedes of Hamilton and Valtteri Bottasromping to a one-two finish at Silverstone.

Shockingly, Bottas’ tyre deflated on lap 50, costing him second, with Hamilton’s also blowing out on the final lap.

With Max Verstappen closing in on the champion, Hamilton was lucky to limp across the line with only three tyres to achieve his seventh British Grand Prix victory.

Brazilian Grand Prix (2003)- Giancarlo Fisichella

Fisichella with Felipe Massa and Fernando Alonso

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Interlagos had it all in 2003, with torrential rain resulting in only eight drivers finishing the race, and the winner undecided until two weeks after.

Kimi Raikkonen’s victory was hampered when Mark Webber was involved in a dramatic crash on the main straight, with Fernando Alonso hurtling into his debris blocking the track.

Prior to the incident, Raikkonen had pitted and fell back into second when the red flags came out, signalling the end of the race.

Adding to the drama, Fisichella, who was the race winner, entered the pits where his car overheated and caught fire.

The Jordan garage were barely allowed to celebrate Fisichella’s victory before they were informed that Raikkonen had in fact won.

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A timing discrepancy meant Fisichella was incorrectly judged not to have started lap 56.

F1’s sporting regulations state that if a red flag ends the race, the result is based on the order of the two previous laps.

Räikkönen was therefore awarded the win, the stewards reverting back to lap 53, believing Fisichella was still on lap 55.

Jordan and Fisichella appealed this ruling bringing timing evidence to the FIA court in Paris, where on April 11th Fisichella was finally awarded the race victory.

Abu Dhabi Grand Prix (2021)- Max Verstappen

Max Verstappen claimed his first world title at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix 2021

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Of course it would not be a list of the most bizarre F1 wins, without including one of the sport’s most controversial moments.

Until lap 53, it was a fairly normal race, with Lewis Hamilton cruising to an eighth world title, fairly anti-climatic following the entertaining F1 season.

Hamilton and Max Verstappen had been locked in an intense title fight, culminating in a series of dramatic incidents, at Silverstone, Monza and Saudi Arabia.

The two drivers entered Abu Dhabi on equal points, in a winner-takes-all showdown at Yas Marina.

However, a crash for Nicholas Latifi brought out the safety car, and a change in fortune for Verstappen.

To maintain his position Hamilton remained out, however Verstappen pitted for fresh soft tyres allowing him to overtake Hamilton for the championship on the final lap.

The radio messages between Red Bull team boss Christian Horner, and race director Michael Masi only heightened the controversy.

Horner asked for ‘one more lap’ of racing, and when the race resumed Masi allowed only some cars to unlap themselves, contradicting Article 48.12 of the sporting regulations.

Whilst the spectre of Abu Dhabi has been put to rest, it still remains one of the most bizarre moments in F1 history.

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Max Verstappen Lando Norris Miami Grand Prix Zak Brown Italian Grand Prix
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