Site logo

Hamilton wins third successive British Grand Prix


Come on, hands up all those who allowed themselves a little giggle when Pascal Wehrlein admitted he didn't know or understand some of Silverstone's 'legendary' corners on Thursday.

Asked what excited him about Silverstone, the German youngster replied: "I think there are many nice corners, like... I don't really know the names, but it's Copse of Hops..."

"Maggotts, Becketts, Chapel..." added elder statesman Romain Grosjean.

Fact is, who of a certain age does know the names of all the corners here?

Other than the fact that even the most legendary corners - other than Eau Rouge or Parabolica - are now known as T5 or T9, Silverstone has undergone such an overhaul in recent years that it is hard to keep up.

At one time, like Spielberg, Silverstone had less than a dozen corners, and each was easily identifiable. Indeed, the names of many would make the hair on the back of your neck stand erect.

Then money kicked in, and other than a shiny new paddock and various other facilities that ensured the beautiful people would not have to mix with the oily masses, the circuit was heavily revised in order that more seating could be added, that the cars could be slower - because that looks better on TV and allows viewers to read the logos - and the oily masses were banished from the infield.

Which has resulted in a fast flowing mother of a circuit, that was up there with the greats, to an emasculated track that bears little or no resemblance to the former airfield that hosted the likes of Farina, Ascari, Moss, Clark, Surtees.... You get the picture.

Make no mistake, Silverstone still has its moments, but in between there are all these little bits of Bernie-inspired silliness.

And talking of emasculation, late last night Pirelli issued a statement in which it suggests the maximum number of laps each compound should be run for, this, curiously, coming less than a week after Sebastian Vettel's failure, which was put down to 'debris'.

Having already been told to produce tyres that essentially create artificial racing, 'F1 by numbers' becomes an ever more likely scenario with this latest step.

That said, Farina, Ascari, Moss, Clark, Surtees and all the other legends who have raced here - or anywhere -would have raised their caps to Lewis Hamilton following that blistering qualifying lap.

Actually it was laps, but the Briton's first was deleted after he fell foul of the FIA's clamp down on track limits.

At a time when most of us would have been having a tantrum, or trashing a hospitality room, told that his time was deleted Lewis went out and did it again.

Sitting beside his at the post qualifying press conference, a rather contrite Nico Rosberg dismissed talk of a first corner clash, then admitted that getting a better start than his teammate was his best hope today. To the most casual observer this sounded as though the German has already mentally given up on this one and is looking ahead to Hockenheim.

If Rosberg was a little miffed by the performance of his teammate, what of Daniel Ricciardo, who for the first time has been out-qualified by his precocious new partner Max Verstappen.

Since joining Red Bull, young Max has won one raced, scored 59 points to Daniel's 52 and now finally out-qualified the Australian. Deja-Vu?

Nonetheless, Red Bull has locked-out the second row, and having looked strong here all weekend one of the two Milton Keynes drivers looks likely to join the Mercedes pair on the podium.

While the Ferraris qualifies fifth and sixth, a second successive grid penalty for Sebastian Vettel sees the German start from eleventh. It's not the end of the world, but then again it hardly helps.

Behind them we have an extraordinarily competitive midfield group consisting of Williams, Toro Rosso, McLaren and Haas, with Renault still trying to nip at their heels but more likely to be fending off Sauber and the newly emboldened Manor.

And talking of Sauber, how good to see Marcus Ericsson fully recovered following yesterday's nasty crash during F3. The Swede, whose car was rebuilt overnight, will start from the pitlane.

In terms of tyres, Pirelli has brought the hard, medium and soft, but following the manufacturer's decision to recommend stint limits, original race tyre strategies will have gone out the window.

The possibilities now include: A two-stopper which would see two stints on soft of 12 laps each and one 28-lap stint on medium, a three-stopper featuring three stints on softs of 12 laps each and one 16-lap stint on medium, another two-stopper consisting of a 12-lap stint on soft, one 14-lap stint on new softs and one 26-lap stint on hard. Alternatively there is the possibility of one stint on softs of 12 laps and two 20-lap stints on medium.

There are two DRS zones, the detection point of the first is 25m before T3 (Village), with the activation point 30m after T5. The second detection point is at T10 (Maggotts) with the activation point 55m after T14 (Chapel).

Also, it should be noted, as Lewis and others found to their dismay yesterday, the FIA is adopting a "zero tolerance" attitude to drivers who do not respect the track limits and this will be enforce today.

Finally, let's not forget that this is the British Grand Prix, and if there is one thing about Britain that can be relied on it is the weather. Indeed, it is the unpredictability of the British weather that makes it so predictable.

There was some overnight rain, and whilst it remained dry but over cast for the GP2 and GP3 events it rained again shortly after. There have been no further downpours but it has remained overcast throughout, and there is talk of further showers during the course of the afternoon.

All the better for us we say, for barring the weather gods - or an unfrocked priest running amok - it looks like being a Mercedes walkover today.

The pitlane opens and one by one the drivers make their way out. The air temperature is currently 19 degrees C, whilst the track temperature is 22 degrees.

Initially there are a few light spots of rain... but these suddenly develop into a proper downpour.

"One of those days in England..." as Roy Harper sang.

And in one fell swoop all that talk of stint limits goes out of the window as the team hurriedly swap to full wets and possibly a (groan) safety car start.

As the national anthem finishes, the rain eases... indeed, it stops. In no time at all the sun is trying to break through - such is England - but the track is sodden.

Race control announces that the race will indeed start behind the Safety Car. A very disappointing decision but at least it ensures Lewis and Nico will get through T1 and all points north without any silliness.

As the field prepares to head off, the sky is blue and the sun is shining, but those damp patches mean full wets and a Safety Car start.

Check out our Sunday gallery, here.


more news >



galleries >

  • latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • latest F1/Formula 1 images
  • latest F1/Formula 1 images


or Register for a Pitpass ID to have your say

Please note that all posts are reactively moderated and must adhere to the site's posting rules and etiquette.

Post your comment



1. Posted by Stitch431, 11/07/2016 15:32

"I agree totally. One can yell at every meeting that tension has to be brought back to F1 but when it comes to circumstances where the men are seperated from the boys, they want "to play it safe" ... what an anticlimax!!!"

Rating: Neutral (0)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

2. Posted by mittagongcalling, 11/07/2016 0:44

"We all love to bollock Bernie and accuse him of ruining F1 but what about Charlie safety car Whiting????????"

Rating: Positive (2)     Rate comment: Positive | NegativeReport this comment

Share this page


Copyright © Pitpass 2002 - 2024. All rights reserved.

about us  |  advertise  |  contact  |  privacy & security  |  rss  |  terms