We always hear stories about the big names in sports, but what of the lesser-known athletes? We often hear of talented and successful athletes in basketball, football, or baseball, but what about the others?
Many people around the world think a racing career is something only a few people get to have. But for those few (and how many there are!), there is no better time to be a professional racing driver than in these heady days of Formula 1. Names such as Lewis Hamilton, Sebastian Vettel, Robert Kubica, and Nico Rosberg are not only household names, but they are household championships winners, too. A list of the most successful race drivers includes many big names, names that are as famous as the personalities they drive for.
Mario Andretti is one of the most iconic race car drivers in the world today. From his time with the legendary Brabham Formula 1 team to his championship-winning IndyCar team, Andretti has a legendary legacy. The Italian-born American has been racing for over 50 years and has a racing record that no one else in the world can match.
The name Michael Schumacher is synonymous with Formula 1 racing. Since his debut in 1994 with the Jordan team, he has gone on to win 91 races, but perhaps most importantly, he has been the only driver to win five titles. Schumacher retired from race driving on the last day of his final season with the Ferrari team, having won a record 91 Grands Prix. He has now retired to his home in Switzerland but has hinted that he may return to the track, perhaps as a work’s driver with Mercedes.
As Formula One season gets underway again in Australia, a lot of eyes will be on Britain’s Lewis Hamilton. The four-time world champion is the reigning champion, a record-breaking driver, and the obvious favorite to win the title again this season. The expectations are high for Hamilton, and rightfully so: this is his 13th year of competing on the world stage, and he has been a winner for all these years. He has been consistently the man to beat since he burst onto the scene in the early 2000s.
Sebastian Vettel is a racing driver from Germany. He is currently competing in Formula One for the Scuderia Ferrari team. He is also the reigning world champion of Formula One.
There are a lot of people in this world with good driving skills, and there are a few people who are beyond good, have the kind of driving skill that makes you say, “Wow, this guy is amazing in a car.” One of those people is Robert Kubica, a racing driver who is still involved in driving and testing cars.
The latest news is that Nico Rosberg has signed for Mercedes for a further three years, extending his record partnership with Lewis Hamiltone. The German driver has only been with Mercedes for three years but is already the most successful driver in the team’s history, winning the Drivers’ Championship in 2014 and 2015. He also holds the record for most wins in a single season (six) and has the most poles (20).
The year was 1950. Twenty-two-year-old Richard Petty was a rookie driver with a 58-race win-rundings. He was already a NASCAR superstar, but in 1950, he was making his name known within the sport. In fact, he was dominating so much that he was nicknamed The King due to his amazing win-rushing success.
Ayrton Senna was a Brazilian race car driver who won the Formula One World Drivers’ Championship three times in 1988, 1990, and 1991 and went on to become one of the best racing competition drivers in history. His life was cut tragically short in 1994, at the age of 34, when he was killed during the San Marino Grand Prix. His legacy as one of the greatest racing drivers in history is unparalleled.
We’ve combed the sport of motor racing and found many big names. Some big names are the most famous names in the world of motorsport, given their worldwide fan base. Some names are known worldwide, but not in this country. Others are known in this country but have never achieved the level of fame they deserve.