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Best EVER start to a season and unwanted Ferrari records – Azerbaijan GP stats and facts

Best EVER start to a season and unwanted Ferrari records – Azerbaijan GP stats and facts

F1 News

Best EVER start to a season and unwanted Ferrari records – Azerbaijan GP stats and facts

Best EVER start to a season and unwanted Ferrari records – Azerbaijan GP stats and facts
Sundaram Ramaswami

Formula 1 took to the streets of Baku on the weekend for a highly anticipated Azerbaijan Grand Prix, after four weeks off. Here are the stats and facts to take home from the sport's return.

Red Bull cemented the best start to a season that a team has ever had, but the numbers show that Sunday's main event around the streets may have been the most boring ever.

Here are the key findings from Baku.

Best. Start. Ever.

Red Bull have accumulated a total of 180 points so far this year, the highest points tally after the first four rounds of any season. The team earned 15 of those points in the Sprint.

Sergio Perez's win also meant that the team have now won 14 of the last 15 races, leaving them alone with Mercedes (twice between 2014 and 2016) as the only team to accomplish that in the hybrid era.

They also extended their streak of wins at street circuits to eight in a row – thanks in part to Perez, whose five race wins for the team have all come on the streets.

Moving on up

Perez's team-mate Max Verstappen secured the 81st podium of his career, moving him into seventh on the all-time list – after just 167 starts.

The Dutchman has now led the drivers' championship for 21 consecutive races, the longest streak by a Red Bull driver, while his streak of 23 consecutive points-scoring races ties him with Fernando Alonso for the fifth-longest such run in F1 history.

Worst Baku race ever?

Fairly or otherwise, fans often want to see two things in a Formula 1 race – overtaking and crashing.

However, there were only 18 overtakes in the race, the lowest number of passes seen at a race since the 2022 Singapore GP, and the lowest ever recorded at Baku.

Historically, every Baku race has seen an average of four retirements. However, this year's race saw only two DNFs – those of Nyck de Vries and Zhou Guanyu thanks to the former clipping the wall at a corner and the latter's car giving up.

Alonso renaissance continues

Last weekend marked the first time since Abu Dhabi 2012 - Australia 2013 that Fernando Alonso has finished in the top four in four successive races, a full decade ago.

The Spaniard has now been in the top three of the drivers' standings for four consecutive races, a first for him in the hybrid era. His gap back to Lewis Hamilton behind him is 12 points, or the equivalent of a fourth place finish.

Unwanted records for Ferrari

Despite taking pole position four times (not including the Sprint) at the Baku City Circuit, Ferrari have never managed to win a race there. In contrast, Red Bull have won here four times without ever starting from pole position in Azerbaijan.

This marks the 15th time that Charles Leclerc has failed to win a race from pole position. The ratio of his pole positions to wins stands at 21%, and only seven drivers have a worse conversion rate in all of F1.

Speaking of unwanted records, the Monegasque needs only one more pole position to equal Valtteri Bottas as the driver with the most poles without ever winning a championship.

Silver lining for the Silver Arrows

First, the bad news. For the first time in Baku, a Mercedes-powered car failed to make it to the podium.

Now the silver lining. Mercedes engines recorded their 200th fastest lap in F1 courtesy of George Russell. They’re only the second manufacturer, after Ferrari, to reach the landmark.

Alpine skiing downhill

Alpine has failed to score points in successive races, after their mini fiasco in Melbourne.

The good news is that both drivers made it to the end, with Esteban Ocon making it the best part of 300km on a single set of tyres. The bad news is the pace – the last time both drivers from the Enstone team finished a race but failed to score any points was in the 2020 Spanish GP.

READ MORE: F1 Driver Salaries: How much do Hamilton, Verstappen and co earn?

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