Was Sebastian Vettel's 2013 Performance the Most Dominant in Formula 1 History?

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Was Sebastian Vettel's 2013 Performance the Most Dominant in Formula 1 History?
Tom Pennington/Getty Images
Vettel celebrates at the 2013 U.S. Grand Prix.

Sebastian Vettel won 13 of 19 races in the 2013 Formula One season. He clinched the Drivers' Championship with three races remaining, capping one of the most impressive performances in the history of the sport.

But was it the most dominant season by a driver in F1 history?

From Alberto Ascari to Michael Schumacher, there have been a number of dominant performances since the championship began. Here, we will rank them.

This list includes all the seasons where one driver won more than 50 percent of the races and clinched the Drivers' Championship with two or more races remaining on the calendar. Thirteen seasons match that description.

The criteria to determine the most dominant season by a driver in F1 history are:

  • Percentage of races won
  • Margin of victory
  • Percentage of races remaining when the championship was decided

For each criterion, the drivers are ranked and points are given to the top 10 in each category (10 points for first place, one point for 10th). Adding up the results from the three lists gives us an overall ranking of the most dominant performances.

One note of clarification before we begin: This list is only concerned with seasons where one driver monopolized the point standings, not one team. So, for example, despite McLaren winning every race but one in 1988, that performance is not considered here—Alain Prost and Ayrton Senna split the victories, and the championship was not decided until the final race.

*All figures in this article have been rounded to the nearest 10th.

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