[F1 2019 NEWS FEATURE] BRITISH GRAND PRIX: RACE REVIEW

Formula 1 news story about [F1 2019 NEWS FEATURE] BRITISH GRAND PRIX: RACE REVIEW

5-time F1 World Champion Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton has secured a record-breaking sixth British Grand Prix win, the 70th edition his seventh race victory of 2019, making full advantage of a mid-race safety car to leapfrog his teammate Valtteri Bottas for the lead.

Hamilton and Bottas went wheel-to-wheel over the opening laps, and it initially looked like the Finn had him covered, especially after Hamilton’s failed overcut attempt. But, when Alfa Romeo Racing’s Antonio Giovinazzi spun into the gravel at Turn 16 on Lap 20, Mercedes pounced - pitting Hamilton for the hards, switching him onto a one-stop strategy and retaining the lead on exit, with Bottas behind still to do a second stop.

“You would think you would get used to something like that, but I tell you, it’s like the first time,” said Hamilton, who also set the fastest lap for an extra point. The gap to his teammate Bottas in the drivers’ standings now 39 points.

Bottas and Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc closed out the podium, the Monegasque also earning the driver of the day award - in his fights against Red Bull Racing’s Max Verstappen, who ended up fifth after a dramatic late-race crash with Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel.

There’s now two weeks until the German Grand Prix, which is run back-to-back with Hungary.

Pos No Driver Car Laps Time/Retired PTS
1 44 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 52 1:21:08.452 26
2 77 Valtteri Bottas Mercedes 52 +24.928s 18
3 16 Charles Leclerc Ferrari 52 +30.117s 15
4 10 Pierre Gasly Red Bull Racing Honda 52 +34.692s 12
5 33 Max Verstappen Red Bull Racing Honda 52 +39.458s 10
6 55 Carlos Sainz McLaren Renault 52 +53.639s 8

Here’s how the 2019 FORMULA 1 BRITISH GRAND PRIX played-out lap-by-lap:

Build Up:
There's plenty of intrigue heading into the British Grand Prix, despite another Mercedes front row lockout - the 64th for the Silver Arrows. That's because Valtteri Bottas is on pole for the 10th time in his career, his fourth this year and first in F1 at Silverstone. His main target, to keep his teammate 5-time F1 World Champion Lewis Hamilton behind at the start - the Brit just six one thousandths off his teammate's time and gunning for a record sixth British GP win that would make him the most successful at the event, surpassing Alain Prost and Jim Clark.

Behind the two Mercedes, on row two, it's Ferrari's Charles Leclerc ahead of Red Bull Racing's Max Verstappen - with the pair on the front row in Austria and no love lost between them, given the Dutchman denied Leclerc his maiden win with a thrilling pass for the lead two laps from home just two weeks ago.

On row three, it's Red Bull's Pierre Gasly, and Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel - both of whom need strong results at Silverstone, and with teammates further up the grid, both needing to make progress at the start to limit damage. Vettel with the added motivation of a world championship campaign that is quickly fading.

Daniel Ricciardo starts seventh, his best grid slot since Canada, followed by the McLaren of Lando Norris - his fourth-straight top-10 start, the rookie impressing with each and every race and starting five spots ahead of his teammate Carlos Sainz.

Alexander Albon is the lead Toro Rosso in a career best ninth, the Anglo-Thai racer very much a star of the future with the British Grand Prix marking his second Q3 appearance. Renault's Nico Hülkenberg closes out the top-10.

In terms of strategy, Silverstone's high-speed nature and new surface means a high chance of tyre blistering so we could see some two-stopping - especially those who start on the softs (pit windows between laps 9-17, putting on more softs with the second stop for hards between laps 22-30). Those starting on the mediums have more freedom, with a one stop window (medium-hard) between 14-22. The fastest two-stop starting on mediums sees the first pit stop for hards between laps 11-19, and the final stint on softs - stopping between laps 34-42.

Formation Lap:
In the top-10, just Bottas (P1), Hamilton (P2), Verstappeb (P4) and Gasly (P5) are on the mediums - the rest on the softs. Beyond that, it’s just Grosjean (P14), Magnussen (P16) and Kvyat (P17) on the softs, the rest on mediums - for longer first stints.

Lap 1:
Polesitter Bottas gets an ok start but stays ahead of Hamilton, Leclerc leads Verstappen, then Gasly and Vettel and Ricciardo. So no major incidents there. Hamilton all over Bottas as they come through Brooklands. Ricciardo goes wheel to wheel with Norris into Copse, and he gets past.

Lap 2:
Bottas went wide into Club, as they go into Lap 2. Hamilton is all over him through the opening complex. Grosjean pits after contact with teammate, both with punctures.

Lap 3:
Bottas sets the fastest lap, a 1:31.644. He’s 0.6 sec ahead of Hamilton. DRS enabled. The Silver Arrows are about to lap Magnussen. Verstappen in P4 is closing down Leclerc. Hamilton has DRS down the Hangar straight but can’t get past into Stowe.

Lap 4:
Hamilton sets the fastest lap, a 1:31.635 - he’s two tenths behind Bottas as they go wheel to wheel. Hamilton tries around the outside and makes a dummy move through Luffield - and he’s ahead. Bottas retakes the lead into Copse. This is amazing! The main race is up front at Silverstone.

Lap 5:
Bottas leads - and sets the fastest lap, a 1:31.603. Hamilton is now 0.7 seconds adrift now. Bottas locks up into the Wellington straight, with Hamilton on his tail. Leclerc and Verstappen are also hot in pursuit, along with Vettel in P5.

Lap 6:
Replays show Gasly got a horrible start. Bottas sets another fastest lap, a 1:31.013. Hamilton is 1.1 seconds behind, with Leclerc in P3 just 1.4 seconds behind him. Verstappen is less than a second behind Leclerc.

Lap 7:
Hamilton responds with the fastest lap, a 1:30.967 - half a second faster than Bottas last lap. He’s now 0.8 seconds behind the Finn. And he’s clawing into the gap.

Lap 8:
Bottas now responds with the fastest lap, a 1:30.938. The gap to Hamilton, 0.8 seconds. Ricciardo in P8 is less than a second behind Norris now. Magnussen retires from the race. As Hamilton gets ever closer to Bottas.

Lap 9:
Bottas and Hamilton are trading fastest laps, Hamilton the last to do so - a 1:30.850. 0.7 seconds the gap. Gasly in P{6 is chasing down Vettel, 0.8 the difference.

Lap 10:
Bottas leads Hamilton by 0.4 seconds. Verstappen in P4 is all over the back of Leclerc as the Ferrari struggles with traction.

Lap 11:
Bottas sets the fastest lap, a 1:30.725 - he’s 0.6 ahead of Hamilton. Verstappen tries to get past Leclerc into Turn 4, but closes the door - giving Vettel a chance, but he can’t do it.

Lap 12:
Bottas 0.9 seconds ahead of Hamilton, whose front left tyre is quite worn. Gasly passes Vettel into Turn 3 for P5, but Vettel comes back down the Wellington straight - but the Frenchman sticks with the place.

Lap 13:
Bottas leads Hamilton by 0.9 seconds. Gasly and Ricciardo pit, both trying the undercut. Gasly goes onto the hards, 2.4 second stop. He exits in P10.

Lap 14:
Leclerc and Verstappen pit together, so it’s a race from the pit crews. Norris pits as well, as does Albon and Hulkenberg. Both Verstappen and Leclerc go wheel to wheel in the pit lane, and the Dutchman takes the inside and is ahead. Verstappen goes wide into Turn 4, and Leclerc goes through to take P4.

Lap 15:
Bottas leads Hamilton by 0.8 seconds, then it’s Vettel, Leclerc, Verstappen, Sainz, Gasly, Perez, Raikkonen and Giovinazzi. Ricciardo is in P11 ahead of Norris, so the undercut worked.

Lap 16:
Bottas sets the fastest lap, a 1:30.631. He’s now 1.1 seconds up on Hamilton. Verstappen is all over Leclerc, trying to get him at the end of the Wellington straight.

Lap 17:
Bottas pits from the lead, releasing Hamilton. He’s onto the mediums, so two stop there. He exits in P3, splitting the Ferraris - with Vettel ahead. Verstappen again tries to pass around the outside into Turn 6, can’t make it stick.

Lap 18:
Hamilton sets the fastest lap, a 1:30.236. He’s 13.7 seconds ahead of Vettel - and 18.1 seconds ahead of Bottas. Norris and Albon are under investigation. Leclerc again keeps Verstappen behind him, with the Dutchman going onto the grass at the exit of Turn 8.

Lap 19:
Verstappen tries passing Leclerc into Stowe, but can’t make it stick. He flies past down the end of the Hangar straight but must stay behind. No further action for Albon and Norris.

Lap 20:
Hamilton leads Vettel, neither of whom have stopped. Bottas is third, but he’s too fast - and the gap to potentially overcut him has closed. Giovinazzi is in the gravel at the vale chicane. The safety car has been deployed. Hamilton pits.

Lap 21:
Hamilton pits from the lead, he goes onto the hards. He’s had a 2.9 second stop. Vettel has also pit, as has Verstappen for a second time - both going onto the hards. Sainz and Ricciardo pit as well. All cheap pit stops. This is unbelievable. Giovinazzi has more than likely cost Bottas the race.

Lap 22:
Leclerc has pit very late, comes out behind Verstappen. Replays show Giovinazzi spinning into the gravel at Turn 16. Bottas still needs to pit again.

Lap 23:
Verstappen told be careful with any overtakes on Gasly. Safety car in this lap.

Lap 24:
Hamilton leads Bottas, as Norris and Albon fight for P8. Ricciardo passes Hulkenberg, Perez loses front wing after contact with Hulkenberg. Verstappen passes Leclerc for P5.

Lap 25:
Leclerc passes Verstappen into Turn 16 on the inside, as Hamilton sets the fastest lap - a 1:29.973. So its Hamilton, Bottas, Vettel, Gasly, Verstappen, Leclerc, Sainz, Norris, Ricciardo and Norris.

Lap 26:
Hamilton leads Bottas by 1.1 seconds. Leclerc says something is broken on the left part of the car. Verstappen in P5 is all over the back of his teammate.

Lap 27:
Bottas sets the fastest lap, a 1:29.958. He’s 1.4 seconds behind Hamilton.

Lap 28:
Hamilton sets the fastest lap, a 1:29.601. He’s 1.7 seconds ahead of Bottas. Leclerc is chasing down Gasly, 0.7 seconds the gap.

Lap 29:
Another fastest lap from Hamilton, a 1:29.504. He’s 1.6 seconds up on Bottas. Vettel is 6.6 seconds behind Bottas in P3. Verstappen is chasing down Vettel - 0.4 sec faster on that last lap.

Lap 30:
Another fastest lap from Bottas, a 1:29.190. The gap now 1.9 seconds. Norris told to make it difficult for Ricciardo behind. Top-four within 10-seconds.

Lap 31:
Hamilton pulls out the gap to Bottas to 2-seconds. Leclerc in P6 is staying in touch with Gasly, 0.7 seconds the gap. Ricciardo in P9 is chasing down Norris - half a second between them.

Lap 32:
Hamilton leads Bottas by 2.1 seconds. Leclerc is all over Gasly, tries to get past into Turn 6 but can’t make it stick.

Lap 33:
Hamilton 2.0 seconds up on Bottas, who needs to stop again. Vettel in P3 is 8.1 seconds back.

Lap 34:
Verstappen told to keep the pressure on Vettel. He’s 1-second behind the 4-time F1 World Champion.

Lap 35:
Hamilton sets the fastest lap, responding to Bottas, 1:29.160. Gasly goes wide at Turn 7, but Leclerc can’t get past.

Lap 36:
Verstappen says he heard something strange out of Turn 7, pick-up issue. Leclerc passes Leclerc into Turn 3, and he stays ahead into Turn 6 after Wellington straight - taking P5.

Lap 37:
Bottas sets fastest lap, a 1:29.127. Similar time to Hamilton. 1.5 seconds the gap between them. Verstappen passes Vettel for P3 down the Hangar straight, and into Turn 6. The pair touch into Turn 16, dramatically as Verstappen attempts to slow down.

Lap 38:
Vettel looks like he’s damaged and is in P6, behind Verstappen.

Lap 39:
Hamilton sets the fastest lap, a 1:29.039. Vettel pits, he’s last now. He goes onto the mediums, and takes a new front wing.

Lap 40:
Hamilton leads Bottas by 2.1 seconds. Then it’s Leclerc in P3, 17.4 seconds adrift.

Lap 41:
Hamilton sets a personal best, with Bottas behind setting the fastest lap, a 1:28.971. Verstappen told mechanically his car is fine, but podium is possible.

Lap 42:
Hamilton now sets the fastest lap, a 1:28.568. He’s 2.7 seconds ahead of Bottas. Ricciardo in P7 is chasing down Sainz. 0.5 secs the gap.

Lap 43:
Vettel given a 10-second time penalty for causing a collision. He’s down in P17, and last - so penalty won’t do much.

Lap 44:
Hamilton leads Bottas by 3.1 seconds. Raikkonen passes Albon into Stowe. Hulkenberg looking very slow. Hamilton told to pit, but he has gone through - as the pit crew goes back into the garage.

Lap 45:
Hamilton leads Bottas by 3.2 seconds. Ricciardo in P7 is still chasing down Sainz. Mercedes in the pits as Bottas enters the pits.

Lap 46:
Bottas pits from P2, goes onto the softs. It’s a 2.4 second stop - he’s 22.6 seconds behind, retaining P2.

Lap 47:
Ricciardo racing hard with Sainz. Verstappen in P5 is 5.2 seconds behind his teammate. Mercedes in the pits, but goes back into the garage again.

Lap 48:
Will we see Hamilton pit again? It;s a risky move. Bottas sets the fastest lap, a 1:27.406. 1.6 seconds up on Hamilton’s last tour. Where’s Lewis, Leclerc asks.

Lap 49:
Hamilton leads Bottas by 21.2 seconds. Ricciardo in P7 is really closing down Sainz, but the Spaniard is staying strong. Only the top-13 are on the lead lap.

Lap 50:
The main fight is between Sainz and Ricciardo for P6. Hamilton is staying out, not looking like he’ll risk with a sixth British Grand Prix win on the line.

Lap 51:
Ricciardo still chasing Sainzm but can’t get past.

Lap 52 - FINAL LAP:
Hamilton wins his sixth British Grand Prix, breaking the record - making him the most successful at Silverstone. He also sets the fastest lap, a 1:27.369 - handing him an extra point for fastest lap.

Pos No Driver Car Laps Time/Retired PTS
1 44 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 52 1:21:08.452 26
2 77 Valtteri Bottas Mercedes 52 +24.928s 18
3 16 Charles Leclerc Ferrari 52 +30.117s 15
4 10 Pierre Gasly Red Bull Racing Honda 52 +34.692s 12
5 33 Max Verstappen Red Bull Racing Honda 52 +39.458s 10
6 55 Carlos Sainz McLaren Renault 52 +53.639s 8
7 3 Daniel Ricciardo Renault 52 +54.401s 6
8 7 Kimi Räikkönen Alfa Romeo Racing Ferrari 52 +65.540s 4
9 26 Daniil Kvyat Scuderia Toro Rosso Honda 52 +66.720s 2
10 27 Nico Hulkenberg Renault 52 +72.733s 1
11 4 Lando Norris McLaren Renault 52 +74.281s 0
12 23 Alexander Albon Scuderia Toro Rosso Honda 52 +75.617s 0
13 18 Lance Stroll Racing Point BWT Mercedes 52 +81.086s 0
14 63 George Russell Williams Mercedes 51 +1 lap 0
15 88 Robert Kubica Williams Mercedes 51 +1 lap 0
16 5 Sebastian Vettel Ferrari 51 +1 lap 0
17 11 Sergio Perez Racing Point BWT Mercedes 51 +1 lap 0
NC 99 Antonio Giovinazzi Alfa Romeo Racing Ferrari 18 DNF 0
NC 8 Romain Grosjean Haas Ferrari 9 DNF 0
NC 20 Kevin Magnussen Haas Ferrari 6 DNF 0