Lewis Hamilton claims third British Grand Prix at Silverstone

Exciting race sees Mercedes take top two spots on the podium again

 Lewis Hamilton  celebrates winning the British  Grand Prix at  Silverstone, his third success in his home race. Photograph: Ben Stansall/AFP/Getty Images

Lewis Hamilton celebrates winning the British Grand Prix at Silverstone, his third success in his home race. Photograph: Ben Stansall/AFP/Getty Images

 

Lewis Hamilton won the British Grand Prix in a race that was like a transfusion of fresh blood for the much-criticised sport.

It was Hamilton’s third win at Silverstone, after his successes in 2008 and last year, but he is still behind the British drivers Jim Clark (five) and Nigel Mansell (four). The win extended his championship lead over his Mercedes team-mate Nico Rosberg to 17 points.

Rosberg was second, ahead of the Ferrari of Sebastian Vettel and the Williams pair of Felipe Massa and Valtteri Bottas. But it might have been so much better for Williams after a sensational start to the race that had as much excitement as all of the other eight races put together.

Towards the end of the race, we even had rain to cause more mayhem and unpredictability. It was a thrilling afternoon.

Massa made an inspired start, surging ahead of Rosberg and the pole-sitting Hamilton. When the Briton tried to put pressure on Massa and ran wide, he handed second place to Bottas, with Rosberg fourth. It even looked possible that Williams could win their first race since 2012, and it would have been Massa’s first victory since 2008. Overtaking can be very difficult at Silverstone.

But Mercedes responded aggressively, bringing in Hamilton for an early stop and allowing him to jump the Williams pair, who suffered even more when the rain came.

The unusual experience of running one and two seemed to confuse Williams. At first they told their drivers not to race each other. Then, when Bottas told them he was the faster man they gave them the go-ahead to do exactly that. Bottas had wanted to be let through. But the Williams chief technical officer, Pat Symonds, said: “No we are not going to say let him through, we will allow them to race, it is the Williams way. It gets the heart beating but it is the way we choose to do it. We told them not to race while we sorted out how we thought Mercedes reacted to the race position.”

But Williams suffered because Massa, as the leader, was brought into the pits before his team-mate and Bottas was always the likelier to make life tough for Hamilton.

Judged on the weekend overall, the least Williams deserved was third and fourth. But even that was denied them because of some quick thinking by Ferrari, who brought Vettel in for inters just before the rain came with about eight of the 52 laps remaining.

Fernando Alonso was 10th, scoring his first point of the season, but he put his McLaren team-mate Jenson Button out of the race on the very first lap, the consequence of another clash between the Lotus pair, Romain Grosjean and Pastor Maldonado.

So Button is still looking for his first podium at Silverstone. But there weren’t many expressions of disappointment here on Sunday.

(Guardian service)

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
GO BACK
Error Image
The account details entered are not currently associated with an Irish Times subscription. Please subscribe to sign in to comment.
Comment Sign In

Forgot password?
The Irish Times Logo
Thank you
You should receive instructions for resetting your password. When you have reset your password, you can Sign In.
The Irish Times Logo
Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.
Screen Name Selection

Hello

Please choose a screen name. This name will appear beside any comments you post. Your screen name should follow the standards set out in our community standards.

The Irish Times Logo
Commenting on The Irish Times has changed. To comment you must now be an Irish Times subscriber.
SUBSCRIBE
Forgot Password
Please enter your email address so we can send you a link to reset your password.

Sign In

Your Comments
We reserve the right to remove any content at any time from this Community, including without limitation if it violates the Community Standards. We ask that you report content that you in good faith believe violates the above rules by clicking the Flag link next to the offending comment or by filling out this form. New comments are only accepted for 3 days from the date of publication.