By Stephen Williams
Written in association with Missed Apex Podcast. Listen in the player below the article.
Do you agree that these are Lewis Hamilton's top 5 wins in Formula One?
5. China 2011
The Red Bull was once again the most dominant car, and Sebastian Vettel had breezed to victories in the first two races of the season. Hamilton's head had been in a mess throughout the 2011 season, but he put those issues aside in one of his best victories. Not even a mechanical gremlin, which nearly prevented him making the start would stop him. Both McLarens jumped Vettel at the start before Lewis performed an outrageous overtake on his teammate Jenson Button at the first corner, with the two almost colliding. Hamilton had saved a set of tyres in qualifying and opted to make an extra pit stop, which gave him a set of fresh tyres to catch Vettel on. In the closing laps he positioned his car superbly to get better traction out of the slow turn 6 and accelerate ahead.
4. Germany 2011
A brilliant lap in qualifying enabled Hamilton to start the race from the front row. A thrilling battle between Webber, Alonso and Hamilton enthralled spectators. This was a race driven on the absolute limit by the top three drivers. The pit stops closed the gap of the leading three drivers and they would swap positions. Hamilton firmly held off Webber who attacked the McLaren on cold tyres. Laps later, Alonso emerged from the pits still in the lead, but Lewis drove cleanly around the outside as Alonso battled poor traction on colder tyres. This put Hamilton once again into the lead of the race and he would go on take his second victory of the season.
3. Japan 2007
This win in torrential rain put him on the brink of the title in his debut season. The conditions in the race were abysmal and reminiscent of James Hunt's championship winning drive from 1976. Hamilton had taken pole so had the benefit of a clear track ahead of him as the drama all kicked off behind him. None more so than when behind the safety car where Webber in the Red Bull was taken out by Sebastian Vettel in the junior team at Toro Rosso. Both had blamed Hamilton's driving as being dangerous, although the stewards decided no penalty was warranted. Lewis took a commanding victory as his teammate and main Championship rival Fernando Alonso crashed out. It was a fine victory, one worthy of winning the championship but that was just not meant to be.
2. Bahrain 2014
The 900th Grand Prix took place at the Sakhir Circuit in Bahrain and to commemorate it, the race was held at night, and what a spectacle it was. Hamilton overtook Rosberg at the start but the German kept the Brit honest. At the time of the first pit stops Rosberg began his attack in order to be the first to pit. He was no doubt faster in the race but Lewis used the positioning of his car brilliantly to stay ahead, often forcing Rosberg wide and off the circuit on the exit of the corners. Every move Rosberg tried, Hamilton had an answer too, and when it looked like he had finally got ahead, Lewis would snap straight back. Even when a late safety car came out which looked set to aid Rosberg who was on softer tyres, he still could not get past to take the victory. The win was crucial for Lewis to make up for the DNF in the opening round, and it also was a statement from Lewis about the strength of his race craft. To date, Rosberg still has not been able to overtake Hamilton on track during a race.
1. Britain 2008
Number one on the list has to be Lewis' first win on home soil. He had failed to deliver a year previously and only qualified 4th on the Saturday. By the first corner he was up to 2nd and rubbed wheels with his teammate through turn 1 as he nearly made the perfect start. It didn't take long to jump ahead of Heikki Kovalainen on the run into Stowe corner and once ahead, he never looked back. Championship rival Felipe Massa was a having a torrid afternoon and spun his Ferrari numerous times. Such was Lewis' advantage that day, he won by over a minute and lapped all bar two other cars. Surely his greatest and most dominant win to date?