Saudi Arabia welcomes Formula One back for the third time in history as the second race of the 2023 season sees the drivers return to the Jeddah Street Circuit.
With its tight corners and fast overall nature, this track has already gained a dangerous yet thrilling reputation despite only being on the F1 calendar for two years.
The two previous races have also seen some huge crashes and some serious battling between some of the sport’s best current drivers.
In this profile, The Sporting News brings you everything you need to know about the history of the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix.
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Who won the 2022 Saudi Arabian Grand Prix?
Red Bull’s Max Verstappen was the driver who won the 2022 Saudi Arabian Grand Prix, his first race victory of the season after he DNF’d on race day one in Bahrain.
This race signalled the start of the Dutch star’s domination of the field in 2022 as he went on to lift his second successive World Drivers’ Championship title.
During an action-packed race around Jeddah, Verstappen battled throughout with championship rival Charles Leclerc who he eventually got the better of on the final lap.
Past winners at the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix
A full list of the previous race winners by driver and constructor.
|Year||Winning Driver||Winning Constructor|
|2022||Max Verstappen||Red Bull|
Which driver and constructor has won the most Saudi Arabian Grand Prix races?
As it stands, Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen are the only two drivers in Formula One history that have won the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix.
That’s because this race has only been on the calendar since 2021, though it looks likely to feature on future calendars for a substantial amount of time.
Given the duo’s victories, Mercedes and Red Bull are the only constructors to so far win around the Jeddah Street Circuit.
Notable events at the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix
Although we’ve only ever had just two previous Saudi Arabian Grand Prix races, both have proven to be very dramatic events full of action and controversy.
Verstappen vs Hamilton 2021
During a season that ended in controversy according to most, Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton battled it out in Jeddah during the penultimate race of the 2021 season.
The action started on lap ten of the race when Haas driver Mick Schumacher suffered a huge crash that caused a red flag.
On the restart, Verstappen was judged to have performed an illegal overtake on the British driver before another crash very shortly afterwards saw a second red flag being waved.
The drama then intensified on lap 37 when again, Verstappen was judged to have taken a position from Hamilton using an illegal manoeuvre. As a result, the Dutchman was told to give the position back and slowed right down in order to fall behind and get the DRS detection on the next straight but Hamilton, unaware of the decision to let him past, made contact with the back of Verstappen’s car.
Eventually, Hamilton would regain the lead to win the race but it left a sour taste all round heading into that season’s final race.
Verstappen vs Leclerc 2022
The return of the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix in 2022 saw Verstappen finally get his hands on the crown though, and in far less controversial circumstances.
In an off-season switch, this race was just the second of the 2022 season and it delivered arguably one of the best races of the campaign as the Dutch driver and Leclerc battled it out throughout.
Taking turns of sharing the lead, the pair jockeyed for top spot, constantly braking whilst in the lead to pick up the powerful DRS detection points until Verstappen finally took the chequered flag in a final lap showdown.