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British Grand Prix: Hamilton takes win #9 at home

British Grand Prix: Hamilton takes win #9 at home

British Grand Prix: Hamilton takes win #9 at home

The legend of Lewis Hamilton at Silverstone continued as he took his ninth win at the British Grand Prix, mastering the tricky conditions and fending off Max Verstappen.

The British Summer weather made sure we were kept on our feet for the full race distance, as a dry race soon turned into a wet one only for the rain to stop towards the end, and though all that confusion, pits stops, and strategies, it was Hamilton who emerged victorious.

There is something about Lewis and Silverstone no one can explain, and as a result the seven-time Formula 1 Champion took his 104th grand prix win, his first since the 2021 Saudi Arabian Grand Prix.

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It was a bittersweet result for Mercedes as George Russell who started the race from pole had to retire with a water system issue. However, before his retirement, Russell had lost his lead to Hamilton and then dropped further down the order following the first round of stops.

Max Verstappen bounced back from a fourth place start and took second place behind Hamilton, the reigning F1 Champion running out of laps to launch a proper attack for the win.

Verstappen struggled early on with the Medium tyres he started the race on, but a timely pitstop for Intermediates when it started to rain, a call he made, put him back into contention.

Later on when the time came to switch to slicks, Red Bull nailed the timing, and while the frontrunners went for Softs, the bucked the trend and wet for Hards, a stroke of genius that saw the RB20 come alive as Verstappen chased down Lando Norris for second, but Hamilton was a tad too far ahead.

Norris finished where he started, in third, and was leading the race earlier, as he seemed to be finding grip on slick tyres when the rain started, but while McLaren timed his first pitstop correctly, they kept him a lap too long out the second time when they switched to slicks again and pitted him from the lead which he lost to Hamilton.

The McLaren was soon under attack from a blisteringly fast Verstappen and could not defend second, on a day when the Woking squad dropped the ball, as they also messed up Oscar Piastri’s race, the Australian finishing fourth after being as high as first at one point.

After starting seventh, Carlos Sainz managed to save face form Ferrari, and made up two places while driving a solid yet unspectacular race, while teammate Charles Leclerc was down in 14th and lapped as an untimely first pitstop for Intermediates meant it was game over.

After a brilliant qualifying and despite losing places at the start, Nico Hulkenberg recovered to finish sixth, bagging some healthy points for Haas who seem to have nailed their car upgrade.

Aston Martin scored points with both cars, Lance Stroll in seventh with Fernando Alonso in eighth, a decent result given the team’s recent struggles.

Alex Albon delivered an excellent race for Williams to finish ninth and score points as Yuki Tsunoda made up three places to take the final point in tenth.

Sergio Perez, who started his race from the pitlane could not make any advances and finished the race being lapped and down in 17th. Tough times for the Mexican.

Hamilton: I wanted to win this so much

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Hamilton was very emotional after the win and was in tears over the radio when his engineer Pete Bonnington said: “Get in there Lewis, you are the man. You are the man. Mate, I have been waiting for this.”

“Thank you so much guys. It means a lot. Big thank you to all the fans here,” the Mercedes ace responded.

Later in parc ferme, Hamilton added: “Since 2021, every day I’m getting up and fighting to train to put my mind to the task and work as hard as I can with this amazing team.

“This is my last race here at the British Grand Prix with this team. I wanted to win this so much for them because I love them and appreciate them so much.

“All the hard work they put in over these years. I’m forever grateful to everyone at Mercedes and all our partners. And to all our incredible fans. I could see you lap by lap.

“There’s no greater feeling to finish at the front here,” Hamilton concluded.

After looking to be in trouble at the start of the race, Verstappen was happy to finish second, and extend his lead over Norris in the Championship.

“We just didn’t have the pace today,” he admitted. “I was slowly dropping back when it mattered in the beginning so it didn’t look great at some point.

“I was thinking ‘are we going to finish fifth, sixth?’ But we made the right calls, going from the slicks to the inters and also from the inters back from the slicks. It was every time the right lap.

“Also in the end the call from the team to be on the hard tyre rather than the soft was definitely helping me out, that’s why we also finished second today.

“So it could have been a lot worse,” Verstappen concluded.

A downbeat Norris commented: “First of all, congrats to Lewis. That crucial decision at the end, he did a better job on. Hats off to him and Mercedes. It was tough. It was enjoyable and fun battling these guys.

“As a team I don’t think we did the job we could have done,” he lamented. “At the same time, I blame myself. I hate ending in this position.

“I’m still happy. I will still enjoy it. I would love for everything to go perfectly but it didn’t today,” he concluded.

2024 British Grand Prix Classification

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How the 2024 British Grand Prix unfolded

Fifty minutes before he formation lap, intense rain showers hit the Silverstone track, which meant all the drivers head out on the grid with Intermediate tyres.

But on his way to the grid, Sainz was informed by his engineer that there would be no more rain. His engineer said: “No more rain until maybe one hour into the race.”

The rain however may have delivered a curved ball for the teams as it has washed away all the rubber off he track, which means the degradation will be more of a factor.

Perez who crashed out of qualifying in Q1 will start from the pitlane after Red Bull opted to give him a fresh power unit and other parts as well as a setup change.

As the track dried totally ahead of the start, all the drivers opted for Medium tyres with Zhou Guanyu and Esteban Ocon on Softs, while Perez will start from the pitlane on Hards.

Things will be interesting if the rain arrives later as expected, which will definitely mix things up.

As the formation lap was over, Pierre Gasly was called into the pitlane with a gearbox issued. He cannot rejoin, his race over even before it started.

Lap 1: Russell leads into Turn 1 with Hamilton in his wake, as Verstappen battles with Norris and overtakes him for this and sets on chasing the #44 Mercedes.

Piastri was behind Norris with Sainz in sixth as Hulkenberg drops to ninth. Stroll goes to seventh while Leclerc makes up three position and is eighth. Alonso remained in 10th.

Lap 2: The DRS is enabled, and Hamilton is within striking distance of Russell, Norris closes in on Verstappen who has a small error.

Lap 5: Russell is out of the DRS threat of Hamilton who is also safe from Verstappen who is yet to drop Norris out of the DRS.

The drivers are warned of a rain shower by Lap 6. A later update pushed the rain till Lap 16.

Replay of the restart showed contact between Albon and Alonso while Hulkenberg had an off track moment and was under investigation for leaving the track and gaining an advantage. He doesn’t get penalized though.

Lap 6: Leclerc is within DRS range of Stroll and launches as attack on the Canadian, but the first attempt doesn’t work.

Lap 7: Verstappen was finally out of the DRS zone of Norris as the top four drivers all did not have DRS, while Piastri was less than a second behind his teammate.

Lap 9: Leclerc is informed that rain was expected on Lap 16 and will last for ten minutes. The Ferrari driver was yet to clear Stroll.

Order for points positions after ten laps: Russell – Hamilton – Verstappen – Norris – Piastri – Sainz – Stroll – Leclerc – Hulkenberg – Alonso.

Lap 11: No change up front as the top five drivers bided their time, waiting for the rain to arrive. Verstappen is informed the rain will arrive in two phases, a light one and then a more intense.

On the other hand, Perez is up to 16th after starting from the pitlane.

Lap 14: Leclerc finally clears Stroll and takes seventh, and Norris is within DRS from Verstappen and starts a new attack after backing off earlier.

Russell reports that the rain is slightly harder.

Lap 15: Norris finally makes the pass on Verstappen down the Hangar Straight into Stowe, an easy one it appears as the latter doesn’t seem to put up a fight.

Piastri closes in on Verstappen as Leclerc is informed the rain will now hit hard.

Lap 17: Verstappen seems to be struggling as now Piastri closed in on him, is within DRS and starts his attack on the triple F1 Champion.

Piastri makes the pass as Hamilton closed in on Russell and is within DRS as the rain increased.

Lap 18: Red Bull ask Verstappen if he can survive the first pocket of rain on slicks. While Hamilton passed Russell for the lead into Stowe.

But Russell doesn’t give up and both Mercedes are out of the track limits at Turn 1 as conditions get trickier, and Norris takes second place, with Russell dropping in third.

Norris complains both Mercedes drivers rejoined the track unsafely.

Lap 19: The DRS is disabled, but none of the drivers has pulled the trigger for Intermediates.

Lap 20: Norris takes the lead from Hamilton, and Ferrari call Leclerc into the pits and Piastri passes Russell for third and keeps on chasing Hamilton and passes him into Stowe.

McLaren now lead the race!

Lap 21: Mercedes tell Hamilton it is time to switch to Intermediates, he disagreed reporting many dry areas, while Verstappen is now under the attack from Sainz.

Perez down in 17th also reports it is still too dry for Inters.

Lap 24: Conditions stabilized again, and the DRS was enable again and Norris is informed a heavy patch of rain in coming and will last over 30 minutes.

Norris has a brief off-track moment but his lead is not threatened.

Lap 25: Leclerc’s switch to Inters is not working and he slides off the track and being lapped. Also Perez is being lapped.

Lap 26: Verstappen is not happy in RB20, as he doesn’t seem to have the front end to turn his car and is over seven second behind Russell who is fourth.

Piastri closed in on Norris and the fight is on for the lead. Verstappen pits for Inters from fifth. Hulkenberg and Stroll follow suit as well as Sainz, Daniel Ricciardo and Valtteri Bottas.

Lap 27: Hamilton and Russell are called into the pits for a double stack, McLaren call Norris while Piastri takes the lead and stays out.

Lap 28: Norris rejoins in second, Hamilton in third, while Verstappen passes Russell for fourth.

Verstappen’s engineer hails his driver for the decision to pit telling him they were back in the race.

Lap 29: Piastri finally pits and drops to sixth, while Mercedes tell Hamilton it is time to push as the top three are all rain masters: Norris – Hamilton – Verstappen.

Pitting one lap too late hurt Piastri badly.

Lap 31: Verstappen doesn’t seem to be able to keep up with Hamilton and Norris, while he reports his Inters are not doing well.

Lap 32: The rain eases off and all the drivers seem to be struggling with the Inters as the track is close to the cross over from wet to dry.

Lap 34: Piastri is on the attack and chasing Sainz for fifth, while it was a shocker for Russell who is instructed to box and retire the car. Race over for the polesitter.

Hamilton is informed that his teammate has retired with a “suspected water system issue”.

Lap 36: Hamilton start putting pressure on Norris, the gap now at two seconds and the Mercedes driver reports that the sun is coming out.

Lap 37: A drying line started to appear and teams were waiting for Turns 15 and 18 to dry out before switching to slicks.

Lap 38: Verstappen reports that he is happy to stay out on Inters and is informed that he is faster than Norris and Hamilton ahead.

Magnussen and Ricciardo pit and Hamilton also follows but Norris stays out. Verstappen pits as well.

Lap 39: Piastri pits for Mediums while Verstappen took the Hards, while Hamilton went for the Softs. Norris is asked to pit at the end of this lap. Have McLaren messed up by staying one lap further out.

Lap 40: Norris takes Softs but Hamilton passes him for the lead while Verstappen remained in third on the Hards.

McLaren messed this one up.

Order after the stops: Hamilton – Norris – Verstappen – Piastri – Sainz – Hulkenberg – Stroll – Alonso – Tsunoda – Albon.

Lap 41: Hamilton is informed that Norris is on the same tyre and he responds: “Leave it to me mate.”

The DRS is enabled and the #44 Mercedes is over two second ahead of the #4 McLaren.

Lap 42: Hamilton maintained his lead over Norris while Verstappen on the Hards kept posting fastest laps, half a second faster than Norris and closing as the RB20 has come alive.

Lap 44: Verstappen is informed that the cars ahead of him – Hamilton and Norris – are facing high tyre degradation, the front left in particular.

The Red Bull driver is two second behind Norris who is over two seconds behind Hamilton.

Lap 46: Verstappen is 1.6s behind Norris and continues to charge as Hamilton is easing out a gap up front as the fight for second place was on.

Lap 47: The gap between Verstappen and Norris continued to shrink and Verstappen finally enters the DRS zone.

Lap 48: Norris continued to struggle with his left front tyre as Verstappen makes the move on the Hangar Straight into Stowe and takes second. Does he have enough time to catch Hamilton?

Lap 49: The gap between Verstappen and Hamilton is 3.3s as both drivers are clearing traffic.

Lap 50: The gap drops to 3.047s as backmarkers are a facto to deal with, but Hamilton starts the second lap with a healthy lead.

Less than two laps from the end, Hamilton keeps his head down and managed to keep his lead and take win #9 at the British Grand Prix.


British Grand Prix: A tale of three Brits and a Dutchman

British Grand Prix: A tale of three Brits and a Dutchman

The 2024 British Grand Prix is shaping up to quite a thrilling affair with three Brits and a Dutchman having a shot at victory.

[Note: This post will be updated with the British Grand Prix report. Please refresh page for updated version. Thank you. Enjoy the race!] 

The British fans were elated on Saturday afternoon as George Russell took pole position with Lewis Hamilton in second and Lando Norris in third.

Russell is still enjoying the momentum if his latest win in Austria one week earlier, while Hamilton who admitted he left time on the table in Q3 will be looking the make amends on Sunday.

The seven-time Formula 1 World Champion always finds an extra gear in front of his home fans and will be gunning for win #9.

So how will the Mercedes boys, the outgoing senior driver and the on-form future team leader, behave in the run down to Turn 1?

They have to keep in mind that behind them, fellow Briton, Norris will be ready to pounce as he will be desperate to put the disappointment of Austria behind him, having also missed out on pole this weekend.

Verstappen vs Norris 2.0

Norris: If Verstappen says he did nothing wrong, I lose respect

Speaking of Austria, sharing the second row with Norris is Verstappen, his tango partner from Spielberg and will be also eager to make up for a scruffy qualifying that saw him damage his car after a gravel escapade in Q1.

Verstappen and Norris will probably be the two to watch at lights out, as both have been in the headlines after their crash in Austria, the Red Bull ace looking to silence the critics of his hard racing tactics, the McLaren driver looking to prove he is up to the task of fighting this generation’s F1 top gun.

All this means the start of the British Grand Prix will be edge of the seat stuff, especially if the rain decides to crash the party, a high possibility on a British summer afternoon.

Behind the top four, Oscar Piastri lines up in fifth, the young Aussie failing to make an impact in Q3 despite showing some flashes of speed over the course of the weekend.

Piastri will share the third row with the superb Nico Hulkenberg as Carlos Sainz sits in seventh.

The Hulk maximized the upgraded Haas VF24, and beat both Ferraris as Charles Leclerc was even lower down the grid in 11th.

Ferrari are lost, they ran back to back comparisons of two specs of the SF-24, Imola spec and the latest Barcelona spec.

They decided to go with the older version of the car and the result was hardly inspiring.

Hulkenberg will not enjoy the same pace in the race like that of qualifying, but Haas have been slightly better in race conditions this year.

New returnees to the top ten, drivers out of position

Brown: Perez underperforming opening window for us

After some time now, Aston Martin made a return to the top ten, maybe the new front wing they have for Silverstone made a difference.

Lance Stroll starts from eighth and Fernando Alonso from tenth.

Splitting the Green cars is an excellent Alex Albon who survived the changing conditions of qualifying and dragged his Williams into the top ten, ninth in particular.

Can Albon score points with faster cars starting out of position?

Leclerc starts in 11th, and then there is Sergio Perez.

Poor Checo. On a weekend where he seemed to be on good form, he binned it in Q1 and will start from 19th.

With all the rumors surrounding his future at Red Bull Racing, he needs to deliver on Sunday afternoon in Silverstone, keeping in mind that Liam Lawson will be testing an RB20 at Silverstone next week.

Daniel Ricciardo did the same in 2023, and look how that turned out for him.

So is a comeback beckoning for the under-pressure Mexican? Or will his future suffer another setback?

British Grand Prix Pirelli Infographics

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British Grand Prix Facts & Stats by Reuters

Formula 1 statistics for Sunday’s British Grand Prix at Silverstone, the 12th round of the 24-race championship:

  • Lap distance: 5.891km. Total distance: 306.198km (52 laps)
  • 2023 pole position: Max Verstappen (Netherlands) Red Bull one minute 26.720 seconds.
  • 2023 race winner: Verstappen
  • Race lap record: Verstappen, 1:27.097 (Red Bull, 2020)
  • Start time: 1400 GMT (1500 local)
  • BRITAIN
  • Sunday’s race will be the 75th British Grand Prix since the championship started in 1950, and is the fifth longest track on the calendar.

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  • Britain has three drivers on the grid, all now race winners — Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton and George Russell and McLaren’s Lando Norris. The race is also a home one for a majority of teams.
  • Hamilton has won a record eight times. He shares the F1 record with Michael Schumacher (eight at the French Grand Prix).
  • The Mercedes driver has been on pole seven times at Silverstone and on the podium 13 times. No driver has been on the podium more at a home race.
  • Every winner has started from fourth or higher since 2000 and Mercedes have won eight of the last 11.
  • Four current drivers have won the British Grand Prix at Silverstone: Hamilton (2008, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2019, 2020, 2021), Fernando Alonso (2006, 2011), Carlos Sainz (2022) and Verstappen (2023).
  • Verstappen also won what was designated the ’70th anniversary race’ at the circuit in 2020 during the COVID-19 pandemic, the first time Silverstone hosted two rounds in a single season.
  • With Italy, Britain is one of two ever-present races on the calendar. This year’s will be the 58th held at Silverstone.
  • Ferrari have won the British GP 18 times.

2024 F1 World Championship Standings by StatsF1