Sebastian Vettel became the youngest world champion in Formula 1 history when he secured the 2010 title in Abu Dhabi aged 23. Since then he has proved it was no fluke, utterly dominating the 2011 F1 season, repeating the feat in a thrilling 2012 finale at Interlagos and then proving unmatchable in 2013 to become a four-time world champion.
Vettel signalled his intent by taking a point on his debut at the 2007 US Grand Prix. He became the then-youngest grand prix winner in history when he won the 2008 Italian Grand Prix for Toro Rosso aged just 21 years and 73 days. He’d also become the youngest driver to take a pole position the day earlier.
The German's switch to the sister team, Red Bull Racing, in 2009 netted even more success. He took four wins and second in the world championship, a position he bettered in each of the next four years. In 2015 he switched to Scuderia Ferrari and promptly returned to the top of the podium at his second race in Malaysia, before adding victories in Hungary and Singapore.
Vettel’s Race Of Champions record is impressive, too, with six ROC Nations Cup wins from six attempts in the company of Michael Schumacher, and another in Miami while driving solo. The individual prize had always proven harder to capture, but the German set that particular record straight in London by beating Tom Kristensen in 2015’s final. He also reached the final of that year’s ROC Nations Cup alongside Nico Hulkenberg.
Four-time Formula 1 World Champion (2010, 2011, 2012, 2013)
Youngest ever driver to secure an F1 pole and win (2008 Italian GP, aged 21)
2009: Runner-up in Formula 1 World Championship
2006: Runner-up in Formula 3 Euroseries
2005: Best Rookie in Formula 3 Euroseries, fifth overall with five podiums
2004: Formula BMW ADAC Champion with 18 wins and 20 podiums in 20 races
2003: Runner-up in Formula BMW ADAC Championship with 5 wins
2001: Winner of German and European Junior Karting Championships
Years contested: 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2015, 2017 (8)
2017: ROC Nations Cup winner, Team Germany (solo)
2015: Individual Champion of Champions; ROC Nations Cup Finalist for Germany with Nico Hulkenberg
2012: ROC Nations Cup Winner for Germany with Michael Schumacher for a record sixth consecutive year
2011: ROC Nations Cup Winner for Germany with Michael Schumacher
2010: ROC semi-finalist; ROC Nations Cup Winner for Germany with Michael Schumacher
2009: ROC semi-finalist; ROC Nations Cup Winner for Germany with Michael Schumacher
2008: ROC Nations Cup Winner for Germany with Michael Schumacher
2007: Debut in the Race Of Champions. ROC Nations Cup Winner for Germany with Michael Schumacher