Top five stats from the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix

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Sebastian Vettel scored a record-equaling seventh consecutive F1 win in the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix. Here’s the top five statistics from the race.

Vettel in seventh heaven

Only three drivers in F1 history have won seven consecutive rounds of the world championship: Alberto Ascari, Michael Schumacher and Sebastian Vettel. The Red Bull driver has been undefeated since the summer break.

The question now is whether he can match Ascari’s record of entering and winning nine consecutive races. Ascari skipped the Indianapolis 500 in 1953 when it counted for the world championship, but took a further two wins to set a record of nine in a row which has stood for 60 years.

Ferrari reclaim points record

Ferrari lost their record for most consecutive points finishes to McLaren earlier this year. In Abu Dhabi they took it back, having scored points for the last 65 races in a row.

Grosjean hits pay dirt

Romain Grosjean’s excellent run of form in recent races is reflected by the fact he’s doubled his points haul to 114 in that short amount of time. It’s moved him up to seventh in the championship ahead of Felipe Massa.

Chilton’s rookie record

Max Chilton may not have much to celebrate about his rookie F1 season but he has set a new record for being classified in all of his first 17 races. The record was previously held by Tiago Monteiro.

Q3 belongs to Vettel

Fernando Alonso failed to get into Q3 for the first time this year. That leaves Vettel as the only driver to have done it every weekend in 2013.

Read more Abu Dhabi Grand Prix facts and stats

MRTI: Keith Donegan earns Mazda Shootout Scholarship

Photo: Indianapolis Motor Speedway, LLC Photography
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Dublin, Ireland’s Keith Donegan claimed a $200K scholarship from Mazda after emerging victorious at the second annual Mazda Road to Indy Shootout. The 20-year-old Donegan earned an at-large nomination for the scholarship based on his performance at this year’s Formula Ford Festival, in which he finished second in the final, and emerged from a pack of 17 drivers from across the globe to claim the scholarship.

“It really hasn’t hit me yet,” said an emotional Donegan, who earlier in his career actually spent two years away from racing as he focused on academics. “The weekend was really good and I enjoyed it. I have to say a huge thanks to Mazda and Cooper Tires and everyone at the Mazda Road to Indy. I enjoyed every moment. Throughout the weekend we were consistent and I kept the small things in check. I didn’t make any stupid mistakes and kept my head cool and that really paid off in the end.”

The two-day shootout was held at the Bondurant Racing School in Arizona and saw the nominated drivers tackle the school’s 1.6-mile circuit in Formula Mazda race cars before facing on and off-track assessments. Donegan was selected by a panel of judges that included former driver and current Verizon IndyCar Series TV analyst Scott Goodyear, Mazda drivers Tom Long, Andrew Carbonell, and Jonathan Bomarito, as well as Victor Franzoni – the current champion of the Pro Mazda Championship Presented by Cooper Tires – and Oliver Askew, the current champion of the Cooper Tires USF2000 Championship Powered by Mazda.

Donegan was humbled to be in the presence of drivers who have won scholarships and championships previously, and added that he is grateful to have the opportunity to continue his racing career.

“You see all these champions here today that will go on to great things in the future and I’m sure the names you see here today aren’t going to disappear,” Donegan added. “They will be back up there and I’m sure I will be racing them again some day. It is an unbelievable opportunity to be given and for Mazda to provide that for any young driver. It just gives that bit of motivation that you need because the [U.S.] is where you need to go to become a professional these days. It is such a boost to my career.”

Donegan is now slated to join the 2018 USF2000 championship, with further announcements regarding the team with whom he’ll be racing to come in the future.

Follow @KyleMLavigne