Lewis Hamilton, British driver, has won the 2018 Formula One championship despite finishing in fourth place at the Mexican Grand Prix.
Requiring a seventh-place finish to clinch the title, Hamilton held on to fourth and brought his season’s points tally to an unassailable 358 points, 64 ahead of Sebastian Vettel, his closest rival and former world champion.
The Briton did not have luck with the tires in the race but held on to claim the points needed to take the title.
He has equalled Argentine legend, Juan Miguel Fangio’s five titles but is two short of F1 great, Michael Schumacher.
Speaking after the race, the 33-year-old thanked his team for the title many did not see them winning, favouring Vettel and Ferrari who have arguably the best cars on the circuit.
“It is a very strange feeling right now. Firstly I want to say a big thank you to all the fans making the Mexican Grand Prix as special as it is,” he said.
“Secondly a big thank you to my team. It wasn’t won here, just throughout the season and a lot of hard work. To complete this (his fifth world title) when Fangio did it with Mercedes is an incredible feeling and very surreal.
“It was a horrible race, I had a great start, was working my way up then I don’t know what was happening. We were struggling Valtteri and I.”
Hamilton celebrated the title with customary “doughnut” spins on the track, waved at the 135,000-strong capacity crowd before moving to the Mercedes garage for further fanfare.
He clinched the 2018 title with two races to go at the Brazilian and Abu Dhabi Grand Prix. The driver will be hoping to increase his points tally to help Mercedes pip Ferrari to the Constructors’ title.