Sebastian Vettel wins Hungarian GP in Ferrari one-two

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Sebastian Vettel increased his drivers’ world championship lead to 14 points on Sunday when he led Kimi Raikkonen home in a dominant Ferrari one-two at the Hungarian Grand Prix.

In his 50th race for Ferrari, the four-time champion German controlled the contest from pole position in stifling heat to reel off his first win in five races since the Monaco Grand Prix.

His main title rival Lewis Hamilton of Mercedes finished fourth, after handing a podium finish back to his team-mate Valtteri Bottas on the final lap following a late switch to enable the Briton to attack the two Ferraris.

Dutchman Max Verstappen finished fifth for Red Bull after surviving an opening lap collision with his team-mate Daniel Ricciardo that saw the angry Australian forced into an early retirement.

Two-time champion Spaniard Fernando Alonso came home sixth and recorded the fastest lap of the race for McLaren-Honda after a stirring and often remarkable drive.

Vettel, who started the day just a point ahead of Hamilton, increased his lead by another 13 after 11 of this year’s 20 races as the circus takes a now-traditional three-week European summer holiday before the Belgian Grand Prix.

It was Ferrari’s first one-two in Hungary since 2004.

Provided by AFP

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Lewis Hamilton’s London no-show helped him become the main act at Silverstone

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It is 10 years ago since Lewis Hamilton lined up for his first British Grand Prix, a handful of races into his Formula 1 career and already the blistering boy wonder of the sport.

A decade on and his career has undulated from the great highs of three world championships to the fallow years of frustration languishing for a time in the middle of the pack and, occasionally, towards the back of the grid.

In that intervening time, there has been all manner of criticism, be it the outbursts in the earlier years to his chosen lifestyle outside the confines of his Mercedes car, with a seeming penchant to mix with rappers and Hollywood A-listers.

It was such life choices that saw him arrive at Silverstone for an 11th British Grand Prix weekend very much in the firing line.

Hamilton had opted against appearing at F1 Live London, the first time in the history of the championship that all the teams had gathered with their respective machinery at an event outside of a grand prix weekend.

That he was the sole no show was met with scorn by his public scrutineers, who suggested the star British driver owed it to his home crowd to show his face and put the Merc through its paces in England’s capital however briefly.

But instead Hamilton opted for a short break in Greece, an escape from the rat race of F1 and a chance he said to recharge his batteries and best prepare him for the weekend ahead where he would be the marked man by fans, fellow drivers and the media as a whole.

Two day holiday before the greatest race weekend of the year!! #blessed #greatful #GodIsTheGreatest

A post shared by Lewis Hamilton (@lewishamilton) on

His no show was met by boos on London’s streets – more for those of a pantomime villain it has to be said rather than a great British public baying for his blood.

But what his controversial decision meant was that he thoroughly had to back that up with a resounding weekend of dominance, and how he did that.

His lap to pole drew parallels to his idol and fellow three-time world champion Ayrton Senna such was his level above everyone else.

And come the race he was in a league of his own for a record fifth British Grand Prix win, so clear was he that the cameras barely showed him, instead focusing on the battles and chaos that ensued behind him.

At the time of his London disappearing act, it seemed right to criticise. After all, here was a driver that takes more stock perhaps than others on his fanbase or the ‘HamFam’ as he has been known to refer to it on social media.

Not for the first time, he was taken aback by the level of animosity that went his way as a result of going for his decision to go AWOL in such a pivotal week.

But Hamilton made the point that, while he loved his fans, his overriding focus was on winning the British Grand Prix and putting himself in the best possible position to claw back the deficit to main title rival Sebastian Vettel. Such was the impact on his on-track activities, it was a case of Greece lightning for Mercedes’ star man.

And what of the British public? Any boos there might have been in London – admittedly much of that coming from a new wave of fans than the usual Silverstone throngs – had dissipated.

The crowd lapped up his every move – as they have done for a good decade – and he delivered the only thing that mattered, yet another British winner.

Hamilton celebrated with the crowd post race.

Hamilton celebrated with the crowd post race.

Come the end of the race, F1 Live London was but a footnote, Hamilton once more the man of the moment – the place he craves to be – and well and truly back in the title fight with Vettel having something of a weekend to forget.

Hamilton is far better placed than his critics to know the best path to pursue to prepare himself for a race car, and Mercedes know it too.

It was telling that team boss Toto Wolff backed him to the hilt for his decision over the London event, even though it was a bit of a PR disaster for the team at the time.

They know that a happy Hamilton is a quick Hamilton, which at the end of the day is all that matters.

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Flawless Lewis Hamilton claims fifth British Grand Prix victory as Sebastian Vettel suffers setback

Sport360 staff 16/07/2017

Lewis Hamilton slashed the deficit to Sebastian Vettel at the summit of the Formula One championship after a crushing performance at Silverstone to win the British Grand Prix for a record-equalling fifth time.

Hamilton led every lap to the delight of his home crowd as he moved to within just one point of Vettel in the title race after the Ferrari driver suffered a puncture on the penultimate lap to finish in seventh.

His Ferrari team-mate Kimi Raikkonen was poised to finish second but he also suffered a puncture in the closing moments to promote Valtteri Bottas one spot as Mercedes completed a remarkable one-two finish.

Bottas started ninth but stormed back through the field, including a pass on Vettel with eight laps remaining to the delight of the partisan crowd. Share with us your thoughts by commenting below, using Twitter or getting in touch via Facebook.

DRIVER OF THE DAY

A close one between Mercedes' Valterri Bottas and Red Bull's Daniel Ricciardo, but we give this one to the Australian Ricciardo who had a miserable qualifying session on Saturday and was forced to start at the back of the grid with Fernando Alonso after serving a grid penalty for replacing a turbo unit. The Aussie drove an admirable race to climb to a fifth position after starting 19th on the grid with innumerable overtakes.

FASTEST LAP

Lewis Hamilton had a flawless afternoon leading the British Grand Prix from start to finish after taking pole on Saturday. The British driver was in full flow during the entire weekend at Silverstone and he set the fastest lap of the day during lap 48 setting a scorching time of 1:30.621 . Dutchman Max Verstappen of Red Bull Racing set the second fastest time during lap 51 with a timing of 1:30.678. Hamilton set the fasted lap on route to the chequered flag. Hamilton set the fasted lap on route to the chequered flag.

BIGGEST DISAPPOINTMENT

Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel was the biggest loser of the day after suffering a puncture in the penultimate lap of the race while running in fourth place forcing him to enter the pits. This cost Vettel three places with the German ultimately finishing seventh. The puncture coupled with Hamilton's record equalling fifth British Grand Prix win means that Vettel's lead in the championship has been cut to just a solitary point. Sebastian Vettel heads for the pits after suffering a puncture. Sebastian Vettel heads for the pits after suffering a puncture. ONE TO WATCH Force India's Esteban Ocon finished ahead of experienced team-mate Sergio Perez in eighth position. The Frenchman has had a stellar year so far in only his first complete season in Formula 1. He has racked up many points finishes this season and the fact that he beat Perez despite starting just behind the Mexican in seventh place will give the young man a lot of satisfaction. Esteban Ocon's stock continues to rise. Esteban Ocon's stock continues to rise.

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