Max Verstappen has now matched Ayrton Senna with three F1 World Championships, after achieving another significant title record at the Qatar Grand Prix.
Verstappen only required three points in the Qatar Grand Prix which is the 18th round of the season for him to win his third career world championship. The Dutchman only needed to finish sixth on Saturday to claim the 2023 Formula 1 Drivers’ Championship given that it was a sprint weekend.
The Red Bull star secured pole position by over half a second in qualifying on Friday, lining himself at the front of the grid for Sunday’s race. However, Verstappen could only manage P3 in the Sprint qualifying, placing him behind the McLaren duo ahead of Saturday’s Sprint.
Verstappen struggled in the Sprint after dropping a few places on the first lap of the race, but he was still able to finish in second place and clinch the 2023 Formula 1 world championship title.
With his three world championship victories in the span of three years, Verstappen now equals Senna in the records of racing history. However, Verstappen would also tie with the Brazilian in Qatar on a number of other notable reasons.
The newly crowned three-time world champion went on to win the Qatar Grand Prix, giving him a total of 14 victories for the year. Verstappen would additionally win his fourth grand slam berth of his career.
In Formula One, a driver is entitled to a grand slam if they start on pole, lead every lap, win the Grand Prix, and record the fastest lap of the race. With this, a grand slam is a highly uncommon event in the sport.
A driver can complete a grand slam in Formula One if they start on pole, lead every lap, win the Grand Prix, and record the race’s fastest lap.
Verstappen managed to accomplish all of this and he now has the same number of grand slam victories as Sebastian Vettel, Sir Jackie Stewart, Fernando Alonso, and Ayrton Senna, who all had four grand slam victories.
The three-time world championship’s girlfriend’s father Nelson Piquet Sr, who has three grand slams, was also eclipsed by the Dutchman.
Jim Clark, who is now leading the field with eight, Lewis Hamilton, who is on six, and Michael Schumacher and Alberto Ascari who are each on five, are the only drivers ahead of Verstappen.