Northampton: After the nation’s disappointment at the Euro finals, the coveted winner’s trophy at the Silverstone Grand Prix came home as Lewis Hamilton took the chequered flag in front of the 140,000 raucous home fans as Charles Leclerc and Valtteri Bottas took the other 2 podium spots.
In what was a feisty affair throughout the 52 laps of running, Max Verstappen lost major ground to his championship rival as a first-lap collision with Hamilton resulted in a huge shunt with the Dutchman ending up in the barriers with a massive impact of 51G. Thankfully Max was able to climb out of the car, then having been sent to the hospital for further checks. On the track, Leclerc then picked up the pieces and took first place as the race was immediately red flagged due to the nature of the incident.
Verstappen and Hamilton collide!
The title rivals come together at Copse, pitching Verstappen into a high-speed crash.
— Formula 1 (@F1) July 18, 2021
From the restart, he maintained his position with Lewis, slapped with a 10 second time penalty, right behind him. Lando Norris, another local hero, jumped Bottas for third place with the second McLaren of Daniel Ricciardo, in P5. Behind this pack, Vettel and Alonso showed a glimpse of their famous on track rivalry as they battled each other for P6 but it went horribly wrong for Vettel, who spun himself coming out of Luffield after some great wheel to wheel racing with the Spaniard. At the front, Leclerc controlled the pace masterfully, keeping the Mercedes of Hamilton at bay.
— Formula 1 (@F1) July 19, 2021
It took the first round of pit stops to shuffle up the order a bit-Norris had to concede P3 to Bottas after enduring a slow pit stop while Lewis came out in fourth place after serving his 10-second penalty in the pits. Carlos Sainz was another one to suffer a slow pit stop as he rejoined the track behind Ricciardo, after a solid first stint enabled him to go long before pitting. Consequently, P6 is where he ultimately finished, with Ricciardo putting in another gritty drive to keep the Scarlet Ferrari and the frustrated Spaniard behind him. Cutting back to Hamilton, who was then a man on a mission to hunt down Leclerc. He first offloaded the McLaren of Norris at Copse, which might have raised a few heartbeats since that’s also where he collided with Verstappen earlier. Next up on the road was his teammate Bottas and Mercedes was quick to invert the 2 cars so that Lewis doesn’t lose any time behind his teammate. It all came down to the last 10 laps as he neutralized a 7.3s gap to Leclerc and on lap 50, he completed the overtake on the Ferrari-also at the Copse corner. The British crowd was sent into ruptures as he took the chequered flag while as a neutral you can’t help but feel sorry for Leclerc who drove a brilliant race and led all but 2 laps of the race.
— Formula 1 (@F1) July 19, 2021
Max and Red Bull, both firmly in control of the driver and constructor championships, ultimately endured a miserable Sunday as they saw their lead in the standings chopped down to 8 and 4 points respectively as the other Red Bull car in running of Perez finished P16. Up next on the calendar- Hungary in 2 weeks’ time where the leaders will be looking for redemption…