A smiling Lewis Hamilton and a dejected Nico Rosberg after October's United States Grand Prix where the Briton clinched his third Formula One world title. The Mercedes driver insists that the working relationship is good with his German teammate.
Triple celebration – Hamilton's third World Championship -- his second in two years -- was won with three races to spare. The win at the Circuit of the Americas near Austin, Texas was his 10th of the 2015 season.
What a feeling – "It's the greatest moment of my life," Hamilton said after the race. "I pushed and pushed. I hope I can inspire people to never give up. It's just crazy to think I'm now a three-time world champion. I can't find the right words to express the feeling, but it's the greatest I've had in my life."
On top Down Under – The 2014 champion got his world title defense off to a winning start with success at the season-opening Australian Grand Prix in Melbourne in March. Hamilton and Mercedes teammate Nico Rosberg dominated, with the Briton controlling the race on the Albert Park street circuit and ultimately seeing off the German.
China story – After finishing second to Rosberg at the Malaysian Grand Prix, Hamilton edged back ahead of him in the world standings after triumphing at the Chinese Grand Prix in Shanghai in April. The 30-year-old captured his 35th Grand Prix win with a pole-to-flag victory, although runner-up Rosberg claimed he had ruined his race by driving slowly.
Singing in Bahrain – A week later, Hamilton made it a hat-trick of triumphs from the opening four races when he crossed the line first at the Bahrain Grand Prix. He managed to hold top spot despite losing his brakes on the last lap, beating Ferrari's Kimi Raikkonen, who finished second. "I'm gunning for a third title," Hamilton said. "I was able to pull through and we need to keep pushing now, as I know we will."
Necessary boost – Second and third-placed finishes at the Spanish and Monaco races enabled Rosberg to cut Hamilton's advantage in the championship to 10 points, but he got back to winning ways at the Canadian Grand Prix in Montreal in June. "Did I need this?" asked Hamilton at the victory celebrations. "Yes, I think I did."
Home comforts – In July, it was a home triumph at the British Grand Prix at Silverstone for Hamilton. The Mercedes man, who had finished second in Austria a fortnight earlier, battled past Williams duo Felipe Massa and Valtteri Bottas after losing the lead off the start line to claim his third British Grand Prix win. "I started to tear up on that last lap," Hamilton said after the race. "I was gunning the whole way and I really just wanted to do it for you guys. I'm going to keep pushing for this championship."
Spa holiday – Hamilton finished off the podium for the first time all season at the Hungarian Grand Prix, but August's Belgian Grand Prix at Spa saw him convert pole position into a sixth first-placed win of 2015. He remained in control of the race throughout and, finishing ahead of second-placed Rosberg, extended his lead in the championship to 28 points.
Tire-some, but a triumph – September's Italian Grand Prix at Monza saw Hamilton finish more than 25 seconds clear of Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel to take top spot and extend his championship advantage to 53 points with seven rounds remaining -- but only after surviving a stewards' investigation. "The stewards are satisfied that the team followed the currently specified procedure supervised by the tire manufacturer for the safe operation of the tires," a statement said after Mercedes was investigated on the grounds that the tires were below the minimum permitted pressure.
Take the A game – September started and finished with victories for Hamilton as he followed up the disappointment of being forced to retire in Singapore with success at the Japanese Grand Prix. He took the lead early from pole-positioned Rosberg before cruising to his eighth win of the season to take him 48 points clear at the top of the championship with five rounds left. "It was important for us to strike back. We didn't bring our A game in Singapore and we had to bring it today," he said.
Russian towards the title – Mercedes claimed the Constructors' World Championship after Hamilton's victory at the Russian Grand Prix in Sochi in October. The 30-year-old capitalized after Rosberg, who started from pole, was forced to retire with a throttle problem. A ninth win of the season set up the chance to land his third world title at the United States Grand Prix two weeks later.
'I'm overdue a drink with the team!' – That third world title was won as Hamilton picked up a 10th victory of the season, his 43rd overall, at the Circuit of the Americas. He overtook Rosberg on the 49th of 56 laps to claim an unassailable 76-point lead at the top of the championship. "I just can't believe I'm sitting here. To my family, I love you. To the team, thank you so much," Hamilton said. "I'm overdue a drink with the team!"
Rocket Man – Hamilton was interviewed on the podium after the race by singer Sir Elton John.
History-maker – Hamilton is only the 10th driver in history, and the first Briton since Sir Jackie Stewart in 1973, to become a three-time world champion. The first of Great Britain's 15 world champions to claim back-to-back crowns, he joins Stewart, Jack Brabham, Niki Lauda, Nelson Piquet and Ayrton Senna on three titles, with only Michael Schumacher (seven), Juan Manuel Fangio (five), Alain Prost and Vettel (both four) having achieved more success.