When can Lewis Hamilton win the 2020 F1 world title?

Lewis Hamilton has his first opportunity to mathematically seal the 2020 Formula 1 world championship this weekend at the Turkish Grand Prix. Here's what he needs to secure the title

When can Lewis Hamilton win the 2020 F1 world title?

Following his ninth F1 victory of the season last time out at Imola, Hamilton moved 85 points clear of nearest rival and Mercedes team-mate Valtteri Bottas at the top of the drivers' standings.

With four races to go this season, and a maximum of 104 points left to score, the odds are heavily stacked in Hamilton's favour to claim a seventh F1 world drivers' crown and duly draw level with Michael Schumacher at the head of the all-time most world titles list.

Whether he completes the feat at the Turkish GP or at one of the subsequent races, it will cap a stunning season for the British driver who surpassed Schumacher's all-time F1 grand prix wins record at last month's Portuguese GP.

What does Hamilton need to seal the 2020 F1 title at the Turkish GP?

Regardless of results at Istanbul Park, if Hamilton holds a 78-point lead or more by the end of the Turkish GP he will be crowned 2020 F1 world champion with three races to spare.

Even if the deficit is 78 points and Valtteri Bottas wins the final three races along with taking all three fastest lap bonus points - with Hamilton scoring zero points in the final three rounds - the British driver would still win the title on countback for most wins.

Put simply, Bottas must reduce the deficit to 77 points to maintain his title fight after the Turkish GP, meaning the Finn has to outscore his team-mate by eight points to take the title battle to the next round in Bahrain.

The F1 title permutations going into the Turkish GP

If Hamilton does not concede more than seven points to Bottas, or indeed finishes ahead of him in the race, he will secure his seventh world title in Turkey.

The only scenario for Bottas to keep his title hopes alive regardless of what Hamilton can produce is to win the race and pick up the bonus point for the fastest lap.

Here are the full title permutations ahead of the Turkish GP

If Bottas finishes Hamilton needs
1st with fastest lap Cannot win the title in Turkey
1st without fastest lap 2nd with fastest lap or 2nd with neither Bottas or Hamilton taking fastest lap
2nd with fastest lap 4th
2nd without fastest lap 4th or 5th with fastest lap
3rd with fastest lap 5th
3rd without fastest lap 6th
4th with fastest lap 7th
4th without fastest lap 8th
5th with fastest lap 8th
5th without fastest lap 8th or 9th with fastest lap
6th with fastest lap 9th
6th without fastest lap 10th
7th with fastest lap (or lower) Wins the title regardless of his results


Who else can win the F1 title?

After Mercedes sealed a historic seventh consecutive F1 world constructors' title last time out at the Emilia Romagna GP, Red Bull's Max Verstappen mathematically dropped out of the drivers' title race after he retired due to a puncture.

It means only one of the Mercedes drivers, Hamilton or Bottas, can win the 2020 drivers' championship.

What are Hamilton's previous F1 Turkish GP results?

Hamilton is one of the few drivers on the current grid to have previously contested a Turkish GP, when Istanbul Park enjoyed a six-year stint on the F1 calendar between 2005-11.

Coming into this weekend Hamilton has contested five Turkish GPs (2007-11) across his F1 career, winning once in 2010 for McLaren, in a race that was gifted to him after a collision between Red Bull team-mates Sebastian Vettel and Mark Webber when the pair were battling for the victory.

Hamilton also appeared on the podium at the Turkish GP in 2008, taking second place behind Ferrari's Felipe Massa, in the year Hamilton went on to seal his maiden F1 world title.

In the other three Turkish GPs Hamilton has contested, he has finished fourth (2011), fifth (2007) and 13th (2009).

How are Hamilton's results at the unexpected 2020 F1 races?

Following the shake-up to the 2020 F1 calendar in reaction to the COVID-19 pandemic, a number of races were added to the schedule which were not part of the original race calendar, including the Turkish GP.

So far, F1 has raced at Mugello, the Nurburgring, Portimao and Imola with Hamilton winning at each and every one of the new-for-2020 venues. Therefore, Hamilton can complete the set by winning in Turkey and in Bahrain when F1 uses the outer circuit layout for the first time.

shares
comments
How Turkey was established as Tilke's F1 gold standard

Previous article

How Turkey was established as Tilke's F1 gold standard

Next article

2020 F1 Turkish Grand Prix session timings and preview

2020 F1 Turkish Grand Prix session timings and preview
Load comments

About this article

Series Formula 1
Drivers Lewis Hamilton
Author Haydn Cobb
The delay that quashed Aston Martin’s last F1 venture Plus

The delay that quashed Aston Martin’s last F1 venture

Aston Martin’s only previous foray into Formula 1 in the late 1950s was a short-lived and unsuccessful affair. But it could have been so different, says NIGEL ROEBUCK

Formula 1
Apr 10, 2021
Verstappen exclusive: Why lack of car-racing titles won't hurt Red Bull's ace Plus

Verstappen exclusive: Why lack of car-racing titles won't hurt Red Bull's ace

Max Verstappen’s star quality in Formula 1 is clear. Now equipped with a Red Bull car that is, right now, the world title favourite and the experience to support his talent, could 2021 be the Dutchman’s year to topple the dominant force of Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes?

Formula 1
Apr 9, 2021
Are we at peak F1 right now? Plus

Are we at peak F1 right now?

For many, many years Formula 1 has strived to do and to be better on all fronts. With close competition, a growing fanbase, a stable political landscape and rules in place to encourage sustainability, 2021 is on course to provide an unexpected peak

Formula 1
Apr 8, 2021
How crucial marginal calls will decide the Red Bull vs Mercedes battle in F1 2021 Plus

How crucial marginal calls will decide the Red Bull vs Mercedes battle in F1 2021

The longer Red Bull can maintain a performance edge over Mercedes, the better the odds will be in the team’s favour against the defending world champions. But as the Bahrain Grand Prix showed, many more factors will be critical in the outcome of the 2021 Formula 1 World Championship

Formula 1
Apr 7, 2021
How Williams’ new structure adheres to a growing F1 trend Plus

How Williams’ new structure adheres to a growing F1 trend

Williams held out against the tide for many years but, as MARK GALLAGHER explains, the age of the owner-manager is long gone

Formula 1
Apr 6, 2021
When a journeyman driver's F1 career lasted just 800m Plus

When a journeyman driver's F1 career lasted just 800m

Nikita Mazepin’s Formula 1 debut at the Bahrain Grand Prix lasted mere corners before he wiped himself out in a shunt, but his financial backing affords him a full season. Back in 1993 though, Marco Apicella was an F1 driver for just 800m before a first corner fracas ended his career. Here’s the story of his very short time at motorsport’s pinnacle

Formula 1
Apr 4, 2021
The nightmare timing that now hinders Mercedes Plus

The nightmare timing that now hinders Mercedes

Mercedes and Lewis Hamilton took victory at the Bahrain Grand Prix despite, for a change, not having the quickest car. But any hopes of developing its W12 to surpass Red Bull's RB16B in terms of outright speed could not have come at a worse time.

Formula 1
Apr 2, 2021
How Raikkonen's rapid rise stalled his team-mate's F1 career climb Plus

How Raikkonen's rapid rise stalled his team-mate's F1 career climb

Kimi Raikkonen’s emergence as a Formula 1 star in his rookie campaign remains one of the legendary storylines from 2001, but his exploits had an unwanted impact on his Sauber team-mate’s own prospects. Twenty years on from his first F1 podium at the Brazilian GP, here’s how Nick Heidfeld’s career was chilled by the Iceman

Formula 1
Apr 1, 2021