Formula One champ, Lewis Hamilton put behind the concerns over tires and Red Bull to dominant the Spanish Grand Prix and extend his lead in the driver’s championship. Max Verstappen finished in second ahead of third place finisher, Valtteri Bottas. Mercedes has become very much aware of the threat that Red Bull poses to this year, especially after watching its cars suffer tires issues last weekend during the 70th Anniversary race at Silverstone. However, Hamilton, who earned pole position, took control from the start and while he fought off a determined Verstappen, stayed in control to the end.
Nico Rosberg, who is now with Sky F1, commented: “That was a Hamilton masterclass.” These statements were made when speaking about his performance during the race. Verstappen, while placing second was overheard being quite animated on the teams’ radio. However, he can take comfort knowing that he beat Mercedes last week, and considering their speed advantage, that was no small feat.
Bottas, who is Hamilton’s teammate, got off to a poor start and fell back from second to fourth after the first turn. Max Verstappen and Lance Stroll both overtook Bottas during the opening lap and from there on, it was a struggle for Bottas to regain position. The win for Hamilton puts him 37 points ahead in the posits race. Hamilton’s closest rival at the moment is Verstappen, followed by teammate Bottas. The win also saw Hamilton break another of Michael Schumacher’s records of having 155 podium appearances, and with three more victories, he will become match Schumacher’s record of 91 victories.
Hamilton, post-race commented when questioned on the achievement said: “I was just in a daze, I felt really good out there today.” There was no question that Hamilton was electrifying, as only the other top three drivers avoided being lapped by the Brit. In what was essentially a two stop race, there was plenty of action at the midway point as drivers battled for position.
The Remaining Top Placements
Canada’s Lance Stroll, who is having a breakout year, managed to finish in fourth ahead of his teammate, Sergio Perez. The due opted for a one stop strategy, and while Perez was hit with a five second penalty, it appeared to have worked based on their final positions.
Charles Leclerc, who had hoped for a positive outcome to the Spanish Grand Prix watched his dreams disappear after his engine gave out for a split second resulting in the Ferrari spinning mid-track. Carlos Sainz managed an impressive sixth place finish for McLaren while Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel pulled off an inspiring drive with worn soft tires. This was despite an apparent sense of tension on the team radio, yet it still saw Vettel being voted Driver of the Day.