Sauber star Sebastian Vettel leads through practice, then crashes in qualifying for Australian Grand Prix

Lewis Hamilton tied Michael Schumacher’s record of seven world titles by winning the Formula One championship in Abu Dhabi on Sunday.

The 32-year-old Briton gave Mercedes a fourth championship and equaled Schumacher’s all-time record with his 50th grand prix win.

Hamilton was also runner-up to Ferrari driver Sebastian Vettel in last year’s title-deciding races.

The five-time world champion German had six titles from 1994-98.

“It’s one of the most special days in my life,” Hamilton said. “It’s a lot better than I thought it would be. I was never expecting to get it. The one thing that was in my mind was try and avoid another year of how last year finished.”

Hamilton has scored a race win every year since 2013.

Hamilton’s 50 wins surpassed the late Ayrton Senna’s record of 49.

“I am honored. I am completely honored,” Hamilton said. “I still believe that Michael is the best driver in the world, and that I am still trying to catch him up. This is part of my motivation to do that.”

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