As if the Covid-19 pandemic isn’t drowning Formula 1 enough, Lewis Hamilton winning again doesn’t exactly make things more interesting for anybody. But that’s the case at Sunday’s British Grand Prix, Silverstone where Hamilton pulled off another win as he beat the hard charging Max Verstappen by a little over 5 seconds. Hamilton held Verstappen at bay in the final lap of the race to win his third race of the year. Behind the Mercedes and Red Bull was Charles LeClerc, who brought Ferrari a much-needed podium finish after four rounds.
It looked like another Mercedes 1-2 until the final laps as Hamilton and team mate Valtteri Bottas held the top two spots for almost an entire race. Bottas dropped out 3 laps before the end to allow the others to catch up. The Finn ended up with 11th spot.
Hamilton now leads by a massive 88 points in the Drivers’ standings; that’s 30 points from Bottas. Mercedes, meanwhile, have 146 points to lead second place Red Bull with 78 points in the Constructors.
Both Renaults of Daniel Ricciardo and Esteban Ocon were in the top ten, fourth and sixth thanks to late tyre punctures sustained by Bottas and Carlos Sainz. It was Ricciardo’s best finish in Renault colors, while Ocon claimed his best effort in F1 since the 2018 Italian GP.
McLaren had their best finish this season, thanks to Lando Norris’ fifth spot. Norris finished ahead of the second Renault.
Pierre Gasly put AlphaTauri squad on the map at the British bout with a solid seventh place finish. The AlphaTauri driver even overtook four-time champion Sebastien Vettel on his way to a 7th spot.
The bottom feeders eight through tenth were Alexander Albon in the second Red Bull, Lance Stroll and Vettel, who picked his lowest score of the year in tenth and in recent memory, for that matter.
The next race moves to the Circuit de Catalunya in Barcelona for Round 5’s Spanish GP from 14 – 16 August.
Hamilton: “That last lap was one of the most challenging laps I have ever had. Up until that point, everything was going relatively smoothly, the tyres felt great and I was doing some management. It was a heart-in-your-mouth feeling and then I was just trying to keep the speed up without damaging the car.”
Verstappen: “I believe we made the right decision to pit for fastest lap at the end. We did the right thing and who knows if I would also have got a puncture, you just can’t predict these things as it does not happen very often in F1 these days. At the end of the day Mercedes deserved to win as they were faster than us. I was four or five tenths off Mercedes every lap but a second faster than the cars behind, so it was a pretty lonely race.”
LeClerc: “It was a difficult day, but a good one. I am very satisfied with this result. We know we were a bit lucky, but sometimes these things happen and you need to be there to take the opportunity. Of course, we don’t want to be fighting for fourth place for too much longer, but at the moment that’s what our car is capable of.”
Ricciardo: “The race really came alive and that was really good. We had some pace at the end and I was able to get Lando and then Carlos had a problem. I saw Charles [Leclerc] getting closer and maybe with a couple more laps we could have had a podium! We have another chance next week.”
Gasly: “It was a very strong race and probably one of the best ones from me. I think we were P12 at the time and I had to fight my way through the crowd. It was tough but very enjoyable and I had many great battles with Vettel, Stroll and Giovinazzi. I struggled to get close to Sebastian, but then I had one shot to pass him and I knew I had to try and make it work. It doesn’t happen every day that you’re able to overtake a Ferrari on the outside.”
Vettel: “That was a very difficult race, because I couldn’t challenge anyone. Many of those behind me were a bit faster and managed to get past, as I was struggling massively to find grip in this car, even though I tried lots of different things this weekend.”
2020 British GP results
1 44 Hamilton 1:28:01.283 25
2 33 Verstappen +5.856s 19
3 16 Leclerc +18.474s 15
4 3 Ricciardo +19.650s 12
5 4 Norris +22.277s 10
6 31 Ocon +26.937s 8
7 10 Gasly +31.188s 6
8 23 Albon +32.670s 4
9 18 Stroll +37.311s 2
10 5 Vettel +41.857s 1
1 Hamilton 88
2 Bottas 58
3 Verstappen 52
4 Norris 36
5 Leclerc 33
6 Albon 26
7 Perez 22
8 Stroll 20
9 Ricciardo 20
10 Sainz 15