The 1st official world championship race is held at Silverstone, UK, on 13th May. It is won by Alfa Romeo driver Giuseppe Farina who goes on to win the first 7 race world championship.
Mercedes enters F1 with new car designs and advanced features, they dominate the next 2 years winning all but 3 races.
Mercedes quit F1 as quickly as they had arrived, after a crash of one of their cars at Le Mans kills 83 people. They would not return to F1 for 40 years.
Maria Teresa de Filippis becomes the first woman to race in F1.
F1 introduces the first constructor's championship.
Cooper invents the mid-engine car and in a watershed moment the first race is won with a mid-engine car by legendary British driver Stirling Moss.
F1 introduces the first safety measures
F1 allows 3.0 litre engines and first uses composite materials, changes which would go on to revolutionise the sport.
Jim Clarke is killed in a race in Germany. At the time Clarke had won more races than any other driver. His death resulted in many campaigns for safer regulations.
Unrestricted sponsorship is introduced and wings are put onto cars for the first time.
2 radical innovations are introduced that would change F1. The introduction of 'ground effect' increases downforce with radically less drag and Renault launch the first turbo charged car.
F1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone becomes president of the F1 constructors association.
Ferrari, Williams, McLaren and Renault dominate the decade.
The legendary Senna vs Prost rivalry begins
Turbo charged cars are banned as teams move to 3.5 litre engine cars.
Small private teams begin to disappear due to rising costs.
In the early 90's refuelling at pit stops is reintroduced and 'race strategy' is just as important as a driver's ability. Cameras are added to cars to boost TV audiences.
Ayrton Senna is killed at the San Marino GP, Roland Ratzenberger was killed the day before in qualifying. A new wave of safety features are ushered in.
Michael Schumacher wins his first world championship.
Michael Schumacher moves to Ferrari.
Michael Schumacher dominates with 5 consecutive titles
Team orders are banned due to results manipulation
A new points system and rule changes are introduced to curb Ferraris dominance. Schumacher wins the title again but the championship is much closer with 8 different race winners.
Red Bull buys Jaguar and becomes Red Bull Racing.
Michael Schumacher retires.
Many new rules and regulations are brought in - such as engine rev limits, adjustable front wings and most significantly KERS, which created energy when braking that could be used as a boost to increase speed.
The points system is changed to give winning drivers a dramatically bigger point advantage over second place.
Sebastian Vettel wins his first World Championship, the youngest ever driver to do so. It's Red Bull's first Championship too, they continue to dominate the sport.
The ban on team orders is lifted.
From 2014 onwards all teams will race with a 1.6 litre single turbo charged engine.
19 races are currently scheduled for the 2014 F1 World Championship.
The cockpit temperature of an F1 car can reach up to 50 degrees celsius.
Ferrari are the most successful team of all time with 221 wins compared to second place McLaren's 182.
A driver will lose around 3 litres of liquid a race, often urinating where they sit. They will also burn off around 1200 calories a race, the equivalent of running a marathon – you've got to be super fit!
The energy needed to slow the car from 315km/h to 185km/h is the same amount needed to make an elephant jump 10 metres in the air.
The temperature of the oil in the gearbox will reach over 150 degrees Celsius when racing and the exhaust will reach 950 degrees Celsius.
Every car has around 80,000 components, if they were put together with 99.99% accuracy there would still be 80 components wrongly placed, putting the driver in serious danger of death.
During a F1 race a driver will experience up to 5Gs under braking and cornering and 3Gs under full acceleration. The neck has to support 24kgs during the longest corner. F1 drivers have to develop their neck muscles and will spend up to an hour and a half everyday doing exercises.
There are over 50 different gear ratios to suit each individual circuit and the cars can change gear 50 times faster than you can blink.
A modern F1 engine revs to over 18,000 revolutions a minute.
Ferrari are the only team to have raced from the beginning of F1 in 1950 to the current F1 championship, with 867 races started. McLaren are the second longest standing team in F1 with 740 races started.
Carbon brakes need to be at a temperature of 500 degrees celsius before they will work effectively and around 1000 degrees under heavy braking.
An F1 steering wheel will set you back £40,000 and has around 20 buttons to adjust everything.
During a race, a driver's heart beat will average between 150 and 200 beats per minute.