Lewis Hamilton drew level with Formula 1 legend Michael Schumacher for the most United States Grand Prix victories by taking his fifth win on Sunday in Austin, Texas.
He’s the third driver overall to do so, with Ayrton Senna having also won five times in the U.S. – albeit only two of them in the USGP title in Phoenix. He also won three Detroit Grands Prix from 1986 through 1988.
Hamilton won his first grand prix on American soil back in 2007 at Indianapolis Motor Speedway, and had won three of the four races held at the Circuit of The Americas since 2012 heading into the Austin weekend.
A perfect start saw Hamilton forge an early lead over Red Bull’s Daniel Ricciardo and Mercedes teammate Nico Rosberg, the latter’s championship advantage looking precarious as he ran third on-track.
While Rosberg was able to fight back up to second place before the end of the race, Hamilton managed to dominate proceedings at the front of the field and cross the line for his fifth USGP win.
It was also the 50th win of Hamilton’s F1 career, leaving him just one shy of Alain Prost in second place on the all-time win list. Schumacher stands clear on 91 victories at the top.
The result was significant for Hamilton given his affinity with the United States, as well as being much-needed in terms of his championship aspirations.
“What an incredible crowd we have here. It’s you guys that make this race so special. Thank you so much for coming out!” Hamilton said on the podium after the race.
“This is always been a good hunting ground for me, and it very much feels like home. I’m so thankful to everyone. The team did a great job for the weekend. Very proud to be a part of it.”
Rosberg can still beat Hamilton to the title with second-place finishes in the remaining three races, but the Briton is refusing to back down.
“All I can do is my best like I did this weekend. Hope that will continue,” Hamilton said.
“Please keep your fingers crossed. I’ll be going for it!”