All about speed

Scoring a Formula 1® victory is all about speed; but is the winner always the fastest? Redefining our standards of speed, the DHL Fastest Lap Award is one for fierce competitors. This is how it works: one driver sets the fastest lap at each race - the award will go to the man who sets the most over the season.

Pure speed

To win will require pure speed – something we at DHL know all about. As the world's leading logistics provider and Official Logistics Partner of Formula 1, we achieve our goals by shortening international routes, facilitating global trade and making the world a smaller place.

Fastest Lap Video

Max Verstappen makes comeback in all quarters in Japan – including the DHL Fastest Lap

As was the case in 2023, Max Verstappen struck back again decisively in the 2024 Japanese GP after having had a disappointing weekend last time out. While it was defeat in Singapore in 2023, he’s had to wait two weeks to put what was a technical retirement this year in Australia behind him. However, he was absolutely the man to beat once again as soon as he’d taken his place in the cockpit in Japan.

Well, not quite unbeatable to begin with, as his team-mate Sergio Perez came within 66 thousandths of him in qualifying. What’s more, Verstappen had concerns about his RB20’s race pace, saying: “The pace wasn’t where we would have liked it to be. That’s a question mark for tomorrow.”

And so it was over the first few laps of the race after Verstappen had had a minor disagreement before the start with long-time race engineer Gianpiero Lambiase about the right setup. Verstappen: “We had, well, not an argument, but he was like, ‘are you sure you want to do this? I’m like, ‘yeah, I’m pretty sure’. Turned out to be wrong. So he was right.” Lambiase later put the matter to bed during the race via the pit radio with the words: “I won’t say I told you so...”

Still, the two of them are known for their friendly digs at one another and for their snappy comments, and it’s what makes for their excellent relationship, as Verstappen told us: “In a way, it also fires me up, because I’m like, OK, well, even I’m not entirely happy with the balance now, I’ll still try to be as consistent as I can be without shouting back at him. But we have a great relationship. And yeah, it works well like that.”

The RB20 was perfectly balanced by the end of the race, and Verstappen unbeatable. Not only did he win with a lead of over twelve seconds, he also used his advantage over the pack to great effect and slowly recharged his hybrid system over one lap and then went on to burn a 1:33.706 into the asphalt with full power, taking the DHL Fastest Lap and another bonus point.

“It was a great team result the whole weekend and brilliant to score a one-two here, our third of the season,” said a jubilant Verstappen. “Suzuka is always a great track to go racing at, and overall I am really happy about the performance today.”

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Formula 1 MSC Cruises Japanese Grand Prix 2024

Suzuka International Racing Course

All Positions

How the drivers' performance improved during the course of the season

2024 Season

Previous winners

SeasonDriverTeamDHL Fastest Laps
2023Max VerstappenRed Bull9
2022Max VerstappenRed Bull5
2021Lewis HamiltonMercedes6
2020Lewis HamiltonMercedes6
2019Lewis HamiltonMercedes6
2018Valtteri BottasMercedes7
2017Lewis HamiltonMercedes7
2016Nico RosbergMercedes6
2015Lewis HamiltonMercedes8
2014Lewis HamiltonMercedes7
2013Sebastian VettelRed Bull7
2012Sebastian VettelRed Bull6
2011Mark WebberRed Bull7
2010Fernando AlonsoFerrari5
2009Sebastian VettelRed Bull3
2008Kimi RäikkönenFerrari10
2007Kimi RäikkönenFerrari6

Formula 1® Logistics Hub

Join us on our biggest season yet

2023 Season

All the stats, facts and figures for the 2023 DHL Fastest Lap Award.