Sebastian Vettel’s superior pace saw him claim honours at Silverstone, while Aussie Daniel Ricciardo finished in fifth.
The safety car made two appearances in the incident-filled race, which resulted in different strategies across the field, including at the front, where both Vettel and third placed Kimi Raikkonen stopped twice, while Lewis Hamilton and Valteri Bottas only stopped once.
Ultimately, it was Vettel who was able to attack on fresher tyres, forcing his way to the front after the final safety car intervention.
It was a difficult race for the front runners, with Raikkonen colliding with Hamilton in the opening lap, sending Hamilton to the back of the pack. Raikkonen was later penalised 10 seconds, but still managed to finished third.
Hamilton performed strongly in front of his home crowd in Britain, making the most of the safety car periods to eventually finish in second place.
Race-winner Vettel said it was a “fantastic win”.
“I really enjoyed this race and I am happy for me and for the team. Also, the start was very important for us and it was great. Now it’s important to keep working. I say thanks to the whole team for this win,” Vettel said.
Ricciardo threatened in the early stages, but as predicted, the Red Bull simply didn’t have the straight line speed to match Ferrari or Mercedes.
“I guess since Monaco we haven’t really had things going our way - I’ll still take the Monaco win but I don’t want that to be the last hurrah,” the CAMS Ambassador said post-race.
“We just didn’t have the legs today. The re-starts (after the safety car) were intense but we just didn’t have the speed on the straights to do much and behind Ferrari and Mercedes we were just too slow.”
In more positive news for the Australian, Ricciardo extended the gap in the Championship standings over teammate Max Verstappen, who was forced to retire after a “brake-by-wire related issue” late in the race.
Ricciardo sits in fourth in the Drivers’ Championship on 106 points, two points ahead of Bottas (104 points) and 13 ahead of Verstappen (93). Vettel (171) now holds an eight point lead over Hamilton (163), with Raikkonen in third (116).
Published: 9 July, 2018