The Podium is the name given to the rostrum on which prizes are awarded to the three highest placed drivers at the end of a Grand Prix. The terms podium position and podium finish are often used to describe drivers in the top three positions during the race, and at the finish respectively.
The current record holder for the most podium finishes is Michael Schumacher with 155 from 306 race starts.
As of the 2012 season, the top-three drivers and a representative of the winning constructor join a group of dignitaries from the official sponsor or nation of the Grand Prix on the podium. The race winner stands atop the central, highest step, with the second placed driver on his right and third placed driver on his left. The winning constructor stands atop a separate podium.
Following the National Anthems of the winning driver and constructor, the trophies are presented in the following order: winner, winning constructor, second place then third place. The drivers then open their bottles of champagne and celebrate. In countries where alcohol is prohibited, sparkling fruit juice is often used. In the event of a fatality or serious injury at a Grand Prix, the champagne celebration is often skipped altogether.
The top three drivers have a short interview session on the podium for the general public, usually conducted by a celebrity, then attend a separate press conference in the media center.
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