MEXICO CITY (AP) — Lewis Hamilton received his fourth profession Formulation One season championship on Sunday with a ninth-place end on the Mexican Grand Prix in a race received by Purple Bull’s Max Verstappen.

Hamilton needed to overcome first-lap chaos when his Mercedes was bumped by title rival Sebastian Vettel of Ferrari. Hamilton bought a tire puncture and Vettel had wing injury. Each needed to cease instantly for repairs.

That left them in a livid bid to catch up as Verstappen sped away to victory. Vettel completed fourth however needed to win or end second to push the title chase to the final two races in Brazil and Abu Dhabi.

Hamilton’s championship makes him essentially the most embellished British driver in F1 historical past, pbading Sir Jackie Stewart. He’s one among solely 5 drivers in F1 historical past with 4 or extra.

Hamilton held his helmet in his fingers as he crossed the end line, then took a lap across the monitor whereas waving the British Union Jack.

2008, 2014, 2015 & now 2017@LewisHamilton has joined an elite band of drivers#MexicoGP ??

— Formulation 1 (@F1) October 29, 2017

Vettel didn’t make any of it simple, in additional methods than one.

A wild begin noticed Verstappen bump the Ferrari whereas preventing by means of the primary flip on the finish of the monitor’s lengthy straight. Verstappen bought the sting and bought out when Hamilton made a transfer to get previous Vettel, who drifted left. The Ferrari’s left entrance wing clipped Hamilton’s proper rear tire, damaging each vehicles and forcing their drivers to pit for repairs.

As Verstappen pulled away, a seething Hamilton requested his workforce over the radio if Vettel made contact “on goal.”

“Undecided, Lewis,” the workforce replied. Race stewards decided no investigation was crucial.

Each drivers made a mad scramble to get again towards the entrance, weaving by means of the visitors that bottles up a brief monitor on the Autodromo Hermanas Rodriguez, and Hamilton was struggling to make up any floor. On lap 23, he was so gradual that he was proven a blue flag, the order to let a sooner automotive — Verstappen — go previous him.

Vettel was on a livid tempo to push the championship to the following race. He by no means bought shut. Late within the race, he requested his workforce if he may get second however when instructed how far behind he was, Vettel replied, “Oh mama mia, that’s an excessive amount of.”

The end allowed Hamilton to have a good time championships in 4 cities, with Mexica Metropolis becoming a member of Sao Paolo, Brazil, in 2008, Abu Dhabi in 2014 and Austin, Texas, in 2015.

“Viva Mexico!” Hamilton instructed the group when he bought out of his automotive.

Hamilton’s championship will spur questions on his place among the many greatest drivers in F1 historical past. The 32-year-old joined Vettel and Alain Prost as four-time winners. He now trails solely Argentina’s Juan Manuel Fangio (5) and Germany’s Michael Schumacher (seven) for essentially the most of all time.

He surpbaded the three received by his idol, Brazilian Aryton Senna, who remains to be thought of probably the most elegant and skillful drivers in F1 historical past.

Hamilton’s Mercedes automotive has dominated the period of turbo-hybrid engines adopted in 2014. Of Hamilton’s 62 profession victories, 30 have come over the past 4 years, a span of 77 races.

He chased down this championship over the second half of the season after Vettel received two of the primary three races. Ferrari faltered as Hamilton had racked up 5 wins over the previous seven races and his automotive has been as regular as his driving. Hamilton has completed each race and missed the rostrum simply 5 instances.

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