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Forever young? Emerson Fittipaldi 10 Aug 2005

(L to R): Race winner Emerson Fittipaldi (BRA) Lotus celebrates with Colin Chapman (GBR) Lotus Team Owner his fastest practice time on the Thursday with one of the 100 bottles of champagne presented to him by the Evening News. British Grand Prix, Brands Hatch, 17 July 1972. World © Phipps/Sutton

If Fernando Alonso becomes champion this year he will break a Formula One record that has stood for well over two decades.

In 1972, at the age of 25 - Alonso will be 24 if he does it - Emerson Fittipaldi secured his first drivers’ title with Lotus, making him the youngest world champion in history.

With time on his side, Fittipaldi went on to take a second drivers’ crown two years later with McLaren. As Alonso closes in on his record, take a look back on the legendary Brazilian’s career in words and pictures, with our exclusive Hall of Fame section.