Sunday’s British Grand Prix offered us a chance at the first British win at Silverstone in 6 years, and being at the Home of British Motorsport left a lot of pressure on talented Lewis Hamilt
Sunday’s British Grand Prix offered us a chance at the first British win at Silverstone in 6 years, and being at the Home of British Motorsport left a lot of pressure on talented Lewis Hamilton’s shoulders. Sitting second place in the championship and with four wins under his belt, it seemed that nothing could stop him.
The chance though was almost lost after Hamilton abandoned his final qualifying lap on Saturday, leaving him in 6th on the grid and threatening his chance at gaining on team mate Nico Rosberg in the Championship. Fortunately though, Hamilton did what he does best and pulled off a flawless performance, earning the top step on the podium once again.
Turning Negatives into Positives
Much like in Austria two weeks ago, Hamilton gained several positions in his first lap showing his determination after the mistake he’d made prior. An attitude tha was key to helping him win, clearly showing he had his sights on the top step from the start, regardless of Saturday’s disappointing results.
“Coming back today, trying to turn that serious emptiness and negativity into a positive today was really my priority,” Hamilton said. “I need to take several steps back and really analyse the last three races, qualifying has been pretty shocking.”
Hamilton’s attitude was projected onto the team also. Despite his once again slow pit stops that last time cost him the win, the hot-headed Lewis we saw earlier this season in Monaco, replied to the team calmly and with encouragement saying they’ll do it better next time.
Hamilton’s dominance to the very end left us without the battles we’ve grown accustomed to seeing this season. His team mate experienced gearbox problems after having issues upshifting and as a result, couldn’t make it two years in a row at the British GP and suffered his first DNF of the year.
Not having a constant battle between the two Mercedes drivers left the front of the pack quiet for the most of the race, as Hamilton hardly faced any challenge from other drivers.
“It’s a shame for the team and I never want to see a team-mate fall behind,” he remarked. “I always want to battle it out – but I’m sure we will get to do it again in the future.”
A Thrilling Race
There was non-stop excitement throughout the race all over the grid, as only two laps in, a collision caused red flags that delayed the race for over an hour. Kimi Raikkonen lost control of his Ferrari and spun into the barrier, ricocheting back into the centre of the track colliding with the Williams of Felipe Massa. Luckily Raikkonen was left with only bruised ankles and Massa with a disappointing 200th race.
An hour later than the original start time, the race restarted and the on-track battle between Red Bull’s Sebastian Vettel and Ferrari’s Fernando Alsonso revealed both of the drivers’ aggravation and passion. After constant attacks from Vettel and a final overtake, they began radioing race control complaining about track boundaries, desperately trying to trip one another up.
The rise of Williams’ Valterri Bottas was also an exciting spectacle, as the Finnish driver went from 17th on the grid to second place on the podium, moving the team up in the constructor’s championship once again.
Delight for Britain
Towards the end of the race, it almost looked as though Jenson Button would be on the podium with his old team mate as he gained on Red Bull’s Daniel Ricciardo, who was preserving his old tyres after changing his race strategy.
Determined, Button almost made it onto his first British podium but couldn’t find the pace to attack, putting up a fight until the very end.
“One more lap and I would have had him,” he remarked afterwards, disappointment evident in his voice.
Despite this though, the British can celebrate as Lewis dominated throughout.
“This weekend really just showed that you never give up,” he said, as he now sits only 4 points behind his team mate, who had seemed out of reach only 24 hours earlier.
“Winning in front of your home crowd is just the best feeling. We really do have the greatest fans here and thank you so much to everyone for your patience after yesterday,” he said. “To see the support all around the track is just amazing.”
With Nico’s home race up next in Germany and Lewis’ positive energy after Silverstone, there will no doubt be an intense track battle in store later this month at Hockenheimring. Can Hamilton snatch the Championship lead from Rosberg like he did earlier this season? Or will Rosberg come back fighting?
What do you think? Have your say in the comments section below.