Lewis Hamilton took the victory of a dramatic British Grand Prix which saw a big accident at the start and great racing.
Max Verstappen lined up first on the grid ahead of Lewis Hamilton and Valteri Bottas after yesterday’s Sprint qualifying, in a weekend with packed grandstands at Silverstone. Sergio Perez started the race from the pitlane, and you can read about it here.
The start of the race saw a very close battle between Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton. The pair made contact down the straight before having a bigger incident at Copse. The British driver pulled alongside Verstappen on the inside, but the Dutchman was ahead and trying to re-take the racing line. While doing so, the front wing of the Mercedes caught the rear tire of the Red Bull, sending him out of control and into the barriers in a very violent manner.
The red flag was out due to the work required to remove the car and repair the damaged tire barrier.
The race re-started with a standing start. Charles Leclerc had a great launch ahead of Lewis Hamilton and took the leading advantage. Daniel Ricciardo overtook Fernando Alonso and then pressured Valtteri Bottas for fourth place. While battling, Sebastian Vettel spun but was able to recover, however, dropping to the last position. Lewis Hamilton was then handed a 10-second time penalty for causing the collision with Max Verstappen.
By lap 10, Ocon and Stroll recovered some positions, as they both sat 8th and 9th respectively. Meanwhile, at the front, Leclerc continued in the lead and Hamilton was struggling to catch up.
Charles Leclerc started complaining about engine issues on lap 16, which allowed Hamilton to close up to the Monegasque and be within DRS range. Two laps later, Ferrari communicated to his driver that the problems were fixed and that he could continue as normal, as the British driver behind him started to blister his tires.
The pit stop window opened on lap 20, with Raikkonen, Perez, Vettel, and Russell all going in. The Mexican came out behind Raikkonen but quickly gained his place back as he had a tire advantage. The next to pit was Ricciardo, who went for the hard compound and came out in 9th behind Gasly. Then followed Lando Norris with a horrendous 6-second stop due to a sticky rear tire, going out in 6th place behind Alonso, and trashing out McLaren’s hopes.
Hamilton came to the pits after reporting that the tire wear was critical. He came back to the track behind both Bottas and Norris. Sainz’s race was affected by a slow pit stop from Ferrari due to a front left tire issue. However, Leclerc’s stop was close to perfect.
Hamilton had a strong pace after his pit stop and he was catching Norris quickly. Eventually, he passed the McLaren driver for third at Copse, which had brought drama early on.
Later, on lap 41, Mercedes give Bottas the order to let Hamilton by at Stowe, which meant the British driver now placed second. While this happened, Sebastian Vettel was told to retire the car due to issues.
The pressure started to increase as the race came to a close as Lewis Hamilton predicted to catch Charles Leclerc, who was leading the race, by the end of it. Because of this, the Monegasque was told to “full push mode race”, while Bottas was told to make the effort of staying behind his teammate.
|Pos||Driver||Team||Time / Gap|
|8||Lance Stroll||Aston Martin Racing||+74.289|
|12||George Russell||Williams||+ 1L|
|13||Antonio Giovinazzi||Alfa Romeo||+ 1L|
|14||Nicholas Latifi||Williams||+ 1L|
|15||Kimi Raikkonen||Alfa Romeo||+ 1L|
|16||Sergio Perez||Red Bull||+ 1L|
|17||Nikita Mazepin||Haas F1 Team||+ 1L|
|18||Mick Schumacher||Haas F1 Team||+ 1L|
|19||Sebastian Vettel||Aston Martin Racing||DNF|
|20||Max Verstappen||Red Bull Racing||DNF|