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Sebastian Vettel hoping to ‘kill Mercedes’ magic’ at British Grand Prix

11 July, 2018, 01:04 | Author: Hannah Francis
  • Lewis Hamilton

Sebastian Vettel opened a clear lead in the drivers' world championship on Sunday when he wrecked Lewis Hamilton's home-race party and claimed an impressive victory in a thrilling British Grand Prix.

Hamilton, meanwhile, salvaged a second place finish after a collision with Kimi Raikkonen dropped him to the back of the field at the beginning of the race - an incident for which the Finnish driver was handed a 10-second time penalty.

Hamilton's aggressive start allowed Vettel and his Mercedes teammate Valtteri Bottas to streak ahead.

The Englishman was quoted by Silver Arrows boss Toto Wolff who said on Sunday night: "To put it in James Allison's words, this is either deliberate or incompetence".

One man who strongly disagreed with the punishment was 1997 world champion driver Jacques Villeneuve.

"This is the greatest race of the year and the greatest crowd, I am sorry I could not bring it home for you today", Hamilton told the crowd. Such emotion is what makes a sport otherwise dominated by data and technical details so fascinating to watch, but when the adrenaline subsides in Brackley the blame will no doubt focus on the true cause of Hamilton's missed opportunity: his poor getaway at the start.

It should be noted that Ferrari previously clipped a Mercedes race vehicle in the first lap at the French GP. "I will not give up, believe me, I will not give up".




The Sauber driver emerged unscathed, but the safety vehicle was sent out. Unfortunate because Le Castellet first time we got taken out and now it is the second time we got taken out.

With the victory, Vettel extended his lead in the drivers championship, now eight points ahead on 171 points.

"I think we need to improve our vehicle until the end of the year, that will be key because then you have something to fight, and if you have something to fight and something to play with, you can make things happen". But after yesterday's very close qualifying session, it was encouraging to see the underlying pace of the auto - and that we had better tyre usage than our competitors.

"I think Lewis could have won the race without crashing on the first lap, but nevertheless to come from last to second, is fantastic".

The German, who had struggled with a neck strain on Saturday, said: "I was a bit concerned going into the race but I was fine, probably a bit of adrenaline".

Raikkonen held his hand up and admitted he had made a mistake. "My bad, but that's how it goes sometimes". "I deserved the penalty, but I kept fighting". "It's the race but it's still annoying twice on three Global Positioning System", the team said. "But definitely not on objective, and well deserved to get a 10-second penalty and two points". "And in a ideal world, I would have had new tires - but it wasn't that kind of day for me", Hamilton said.

The race therefore became a battle between the Mercedes keeping their old tyres alive and the aggressive Ferrari and Red Bull Racing cars chasing them down to seize the podium.

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