Verstappen becomes F1’s youngest winner in Spain
© David Ramos/Getty Images

The top Formula 1 records that may never be broken

Formula 1 drivers love setting records.
By Tom Bellingham
6 min readUpdated on
Formula 1 is possibly the most fascinating motorsport of all, and the history of the sport goes way back. There have been auto racing world championships since 1950, and drivers have set some impressive records over the years.
Here are the top Formula 1 milestones.

Fastest pit stop: Red Bull Racing – 2019 Brazilian Grand Prix

The record: 1.82 seconds
1.82 seconds is the time it took the Aston Martin Red Bull team to change the four tires of Max Verstappen’s RB15 in Interlagos, Brazil. The previous record holder was also Red Bull Racing with 1.88 seconds. Brazil yet again raised the bar for other teams.
Out-of-this-world pit stops are one of the specialties of Red Bull Racing. In addition to speed records for all five pit stops in 2019 alone, the crew literally lifted off and performed a pit stop in zero gravity thousands of metres above the earth. You can watch the video here.

2 min

Zero-G pit stop

Find out what happened when the mechanics tried to do a pit stop at zero gravity on a cosmonaut training plane.

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Be sure to download the free Red Bull TV app and catch the latest F1 action on all your devices! Get the app here.

The most starts: Fernando Alonso

Yuki Tsunoda and Fernando Alonso (right) wave during the drivers' parade

Yuki Tsunoda and Fernando Alonso (right) wave during the drivers' parade

© Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool

The record: 358 races
No one has competed in more Formula 1 events than Fernando Alonso. The Spanish 2005 and 2006 F1 world champion surpassed Kimi Raikkonen in the 2022 season. Thus far, Alonso has competed in 358 Formula 1 races, while Iceman Raikkonen only competed 353 times before the end of his career.
In the 2002 season, the Iceman switched to McLaren and started alongside David Coulthard. On the occasion of Red Bull Racing Road Trips, DC is now even challenging Martin Šonka, the Red Bull Air Race World Champion. The remarkable video is here:

7 min

David Coulthard tours Czech and Slovakia castles

David Coulthard takes a road trip from the castles of the Czech Republic to the castles of Slovakia.

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Speed record: Over 370 km/h

Yuki Tsunoda and Valtteri Bottas at the Bahrain F1 Grand Prix, 2022.

Valtteri Bottas (left) and Yuki Tsuonda on the track at the Bahrain GP

© Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool

The record: 372.5 km/h
Formula 1 is known for its breath-taking speed. The record for the highest speed ever driven is also held by a Finn:
In the Mexican Grand Prix, Valtteri Bottas (officially) reached a top speed of 372.5 km/h, and the FIA even unofficially claimed he hit 373.3 km/h. He is thus the first F1 driver to surpass the 370 km/h mark in a Grand Prix.
To date, the unofficial front runner is Juan Pablo Montoya, who was clocked at 372.6 km/h while test driving in Monza, Italy, during the 2005 season.

Quickest penalty: Sebastian Vettel – 2006 Turkish GP

A photo of Sebastian Vettel in his helmet, in his car.

Sebastian Vettel

© Red Bull Content Pool

The record: 6 seconds
Sebastian Vettel has broken just about every F1 record—from youngest world champion to most wins in a row. But there is one record he probably doesn’t want to talk about. During his first appearance in a Formula 1 at the 2006 Turkish Grand Prix, Vettel drove out of the garage and accelerated in the pit lane. For that he received a penalty in the first 6 seconds of his F1 career.
The architects of our success: You can see how Christian Horner and Adrian Newey took Red Bull’s Formula 1 to the top in the film “Unfiltered: Horner and Newey.”

48 min

Unfiltered: Horner and Newey

Oracle Red Bull Racing's team principal and chief technical officer reflect on their success.

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Youngest winner: Max Verstappen – 2016 Spanish GP

The record: 18 years and 227 days old
Max Verstappen broke his first record during his F1 debut with Toro Rosso in Australia. At 17 years and 166 days old, he was the youngest driver ever to do so. But that was not enough: In his next race in Malaysia, he was also the youngest pilot to ever score points at a Grand Prix.
24 races later, Max made his debut with Red Bull Racing at the Spanish GP and dusted off a few more records to celebrate the day: as the first Dutch F1 winner, the youngest winner in the history of Formula 1 racing, and the youngest pilot of all time to lead a Grand Prix.
Even on the ice, no one can beat the reigning F1 world champion:

2 min

GP Ice Race

Watch as Max Verstappen enjoys his first track action of 2022 with ice speedway star Franky Zorn.



The youngest and oldest

Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen talk after Abu Dhabi Grand Prix in 2021

F1 icon Lewis Hamilton with his fierce rival Max Verstappen

© Getty Images / Red Bull Content Pool

At 17 years and 180 days of age, Max Verstappen secured the points record as the youngest F1 pilot with 7th place at the 2015 Malaysian Grand Prix.
The oldest driver to land in the points was the Frenchman Philippe Étancelin at 53 years and 259 days of age at the 1950 Italian Grand Prix.
At his F1 debut, Verstappen was even younger: 17 years and 166 days old—also a record. The oldest GP participant in the history of Formula 1 is Louis Chiron of Monaco at 55 years and 292 days of age.

Narrowest gap in qualifying: 1997 European GP

The record: 0.000 seconds between first and third place
The 1997 title finals were already a close affair as Michael Schumacher and Jacques Villeneuve started off the finals in Jerez with only one point difference. But an unusual qualifying match made it even more exciting.
Villeneuve drove the lap in 1 minute 21.072 seconds and initially secured the pole position for himself. Minutes later, Schumacher finished in the exact same time. But that was not all! Then Villeneuve’s teammate Heinz-Harald Frentzen also crossed the finish line in the same time as the other two! Three cars and three identical lap times measured to the nearest millisecond.

Fastest race: 2003 Italian GP

The record: an average speed of 247.585 km/h
It is probably not surprising that the fastest Formula 1 race of all time took place in Monza. Michael Schumacher won the Italian Grand Prix in 2003 in only 1 hour 14 minutes and 19.838 seconds with an average speed of 247.585 km/h, making this the shortest F1 race of all time—with no red flags
Michael Schumacher 2003 Italian GP

Michael Schumacher on the 2003 Italian GP track as the crowd looks on

© Ferrari


Smallest lead: 1971 Italian GP

The record: The top 3 separated by just 0.09 seconds
A lot of incredible moments have happened at the finish line in Formula 1 racing. But, nothing compares to the 1971 Italian Grand Prix, where five cars crossed the finish line in a slipstream.
Peter Gethin took the win with only a 0.01 second lead over Ronnie Peterson. François Cevert was only 0.09 seconds away from 1st place. Mike Hailwood was only 0.18 seconds behind, and Howden Ganley, who crossed the finish line only 0.61 seconds after the winner, made for the closest result in F1 history.
A man standing at the finish line waving the flag as two cars next to each other approach the finish

The close finish at the 1971 Italian Grand Prix

© Popperfoto


Shortest career: Marco Apicella, 1993 Italian GP

The record: 800 metres
Many Formula 1 drivers have only competed in a single GP race, but no performance has been shorter than that of Marco Apicella at the 1993 Italian Grand Prix.
The Italian driver impressed former motorsport team owner Eddie Jordan so much that he gave him a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to compete for the Jordan Team in Italy. But after a multi-car crash at the first corner on the first lap, Apicella's career in Formula 1 ended in a matter of seconds.

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