Max Verstappen becomes F1 great with record-breaking season

Max Verstappen becomes F1 great with record-breaking season

Double world champion Max Verstappen has ended his historic 2022 Formula 1 season with an exclamation.

His 15th victory of the season in the final race of the year sealed a near-perfect campaign for the Dutchman.

He is a two-time F1 world champion, joining greats like Mika Häkkinen and Fernando Alonso.

But what Verstappen has achieved this season is arguably the greatest performance of any world champion.

He dominated the field with a record-breaking 15 victories over 22 races, wrapping up his second championship with four grands prix remaining, and taking wins from as low as 14th on the grid.

No driver has had more wins in a single season or scored more championship points.

And while these stats have been inflated by F1 holding more races and scoring differently than it has in decades gone by, few world champions have won their title as emphatically as Verstappen.

Michael Schumacher’s 2004 triumph and Sebastian Vettel’s 2013 championship are the nearest examples of dominance in the past 20 years.

Verstappen’s is a performance that should see the Dutchman thought of by fans in the same regard as Schumacher, Lewis Hamilton and Vettel.

Max Verstappen celebrates his Abu Dhabi Grand Prix win with partner Kelly Piquet.(Getty Images: Mark Thompson)

And he almost needed a season as dominant as this in the wake of his controversial first championship the year before.

He was the beneficiary of a safety car ruling at the end of the final race of the season, allowing him to overtake Hamilton on the final lap to win the race and championship.

His championship was also clouded after Red Bull was found to have breached F1’s cost cap for the 2021 season.

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