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A Year of Racing Records - News

2022 has been a year where motorsport has continued moving forward and pushing the boundaries of what can be achieved on two or four wheels. It all started back in January with the Dakar Rally, when the world was introduced to Audi's new RS Q E-Tron rally car, which stunned the everyone with a sublime debut, before culminating on 20 November with Gilles Magnus winning the last-ever FIA World Touring Car Cup race with, ironically, another Audi, the RS3 LMS TCR.

From oldest winners in history to the largest deficits overcome, 2022 has thrown up some iconic moments in motorsport so, as 2022 draws to a close, wanted to take time to look back at the various motorsport milestones achieved throughout the year.

Buckle up, sit back and relax, as we guide you through significant milestones and records that were achieved in motorsport during 2022.

  • Verstappen and Red Bull's Formula One domination

The 2022 Formula One season was a momentous one for Max Verstappen and Red Bull. Verstappen started the season with two DNFs in the opening three races, placing him 46 points behind the then-leader, Ferrari's Charles Leclerc. Overcoming this deficit on his way to the championship was one of the many records broken throughout what ended up as a spectacular season for the Dutchman.

On his way to championship victory, Verstappen also clocked in the most wins in one season, 15, beating Michael Schumacher and Sebastien Vettel's joint record of 13. He also accumulated the most points, with 454, all while not always starting from pole position. In fact, Mad Max won a total of nine races from outside pole position.

  • Women continue to gain traction in the motorsport world

While the collapse of the W Series took a lot of the headlines in 2022, pushing opportunities for females in motorsport continued to be high on the agenda – and 2022 delivered some huge milestones.

Tatiana Calderon became the first female driver to secure a full-time ride in the IndyCar series since 2013, driving A.J.Foyt Racing Team's number 11 car during the 2022 season. Jessica Hawkins also became the first British female driver to take an overall victory in the TCR UK competition.

Then there was the rise of the Iron Dames, an all-female racing team led by the President of FIA's Women in Motorsport, Deborah Mayer. Back in July, the team won the Gold Cup at this year's 24 Hours of Spa, becoming the first all-female team to conquer the event. The monumental moment was not only a significant one for drivers Sarah Bovy, Michelle Gatting, Doriane Pin and Rahel Frey but for women in motorsport in general.

  • WRC's season for the ages

Whoever claimed age was just a number was certainly prophesying something when you consider key records that tumbled during the 2022 World Rally Championship (WRC) season.

WRC kicked off back in January and the first stage, hosted at the infamous Rallye Monte Carlo, presented WRC fans with their first set of record-breakers. Veteran driver Sébastien Loeb became the oldest winner of a championship round, aged 47. Isabelle Galmiche, Loeb's co-driver, also became the first female to top the podium since 2007.

Loeb's age-related record was not the only one to tumble this season, however. Step forward 22-year-old Finnish driver, Kalle Rovanperä.

At the age of 22 years and one day, Rovanperä broke Colin McRae's long-standing, 27 year record, and became the youngest-ever WRC World Champion. Six victories throughout the season were enough for this young man to replace McRae in the history books with the future looking bright for this young star.

  • Formula E's popularity surges

With the shift to electric vehicles now firmly on the general public's horizon, they also tuned in to glimpse what might be the future of motor racing in their droves. Now in its eighth season, Formula E continues to grow in popularity among motorsport fans.

Throughout the season, Formula E's viewing numbers increased once more, culminating in recorded viewing figures topping 381 million people. Jakarta was the most-watched race in Formula E's history, pulling in 26.7 million viewers.

Another age-related record tumbled during the season too. Lucas Di Grassi became the oldest driver to win a race at 37 years old. That win also helped him match the current record for most wins in Formula E in total, which currently stands at 13.

  • The Need for Speed in MotoGP

MotoGP offered up an exciting season for their dedicated fans with Francesco Bagnaia claiming the title. Similar to Formula One, Bagnaia had to overturn a large deficit, 91-points and the largest in MotoGP history, to claim his title. His victory was even more astonishing considering he did not finish in five of the 20 races during the season.

Jorge Martin also claimed a coveted record in any motorsport category. Back in May, Martin broke the record for the highest speed recorded during a MotoGP race. Beating the previous record by 1.2km/h, Martin was clocked at 363.3km/h while battling in the slipstream of other riders. Unfortunately, gearbox issues made the rest of the day less memorable for the Spaniard.

  • Conclusion

2022 has been a fantastic year for motorsport with plenty of records tumbling and milestones achieved. We are sure 2023 will create more momentous memories for fans to savour. We know we'll be keeping a close eye on the track. Visit our Racing Car Driving Experiences page to book for your own motorsport action in the New Year from available dates on our Racing Car Experiences Calendar or purchase of our Gift Vouchers.

A Year of Racing Records
29 December 2022

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