RACE DEBRIEF

    F1 fans everywhere hoped it would be close, but perhaps nobody thought it would be quite that close – Lewis Hamilton had to muster all his seven-time champion’s know-how to stay ahead of Max Verstappen in Sakhir on Sunday. With victory and a memorable Grand Prix came a few more stats for the record book – here’s a handful to savour…

    • Hamilton’s win was the 300th GP victory for a British driver.

    • It was Hamilton’s 75th win for Mercedes.

    RACE REPORT: Hamilton wins epic season opener by just 0.7s after thrilling battle with Verstappen in Bahrain

    • He takes the all-time laps led record from Michael Schumacher, with 5,126.

    • Hamilton won the opening race of the year for the first time since 2015.

    • Mercedes have consistently led both the drivers’ and constructors' championships since the 2018 German GP.

    1309610859
    It was close, but no cigar for Verstappen

    • Verstappen finished 2nd for the 7th time since the start of 2020.

    • Verstappen has been 2nd in the last 2 Bahrain Grands Prix, but Red Bull have still never won here since it became a night race in 2014.

    • Valtteri Bottas set the fastest lap of the race en route to 3rd for Mercedes.

    • Hamilton, Verstappen and Bottas shared a podium for the 14th time, tying the F1 record previously held by Hamilton, Nico Rosberg and Sebastian Vettel.

    DRIVER OF THE DAY: Perez's pit-lane-to-P5 fightback gets your vote

    • This is the 14th time Hamilton has won with Verstappen finishing 2nd.

    • McLaren’s Lando Norris was 4th, an identical result to the 2020 Bahrain GP (he scored 3 top-4 finishes last year).

    • In the second Red Bull, Sergio Perez finished 5th from a pit-lane start on his debut for his new team.

    1309584014
    Mick Schumacher's F1 debut went better than Michael's

    • Charles Leclerc finished 6th for Ferrari, his best result since Turkey last year.

    • Daniel Ricciardo’s 7th place meant both McLarens scored for the 6th consecutive race.

    • With Carlos Sainz 8th on his Scuderia debut, both Ferraris scored for only the 6th time since the beginning of 2020.

    • Yuki Tsunoda became the 65th driver to score on his debut and the first since Stoffel Vandoorne at this track in 2016.

    READ MORE: Tsunoda only '50 per cent happy' with debut race, despite securing P9 with last lap pass

    • The new AlphaTauri star also secured the first points for a Japanese driver since Kamui Kobayashi was 9th in the 2012 Brazilian GP for Sauber.

    • Lance Stroll’s 10th place for Aston Martin gave him a better start to his campaign than last year, when he retired from the season-opener for Racing Point.

    • Mick Schumacher finished 16th on his F1 debut with Haas. Father Michael retired on lap 1 of his debut.