My race wasn’t going too bad until a few laps before the end. I suddenly had the problem, my front left tire let go with no warning; the air stayed in the tire but the rubber part, came off. It’s disappointing because without that issue the second place was secured, and we deserved a better result. We had made some changes to the car and they seemed to have improved the feeling. When it’s like this you are confident and you can push; I hope that it will be a similar story in the future races. However, today we were lacking a little bit of speed against our rivals. We did what we could but obviously there’s some work to be done to catch up the Mercedes in places like this. This is definitely not our strongest type of circuit. I’m interested to see what happens in the next race, I guess the Hungarian track should suit our car better.
Ferrari’s Raikkonen, Vettel had no warning of British GP tyre drama
Kimi Raikkonen says "everything felt normal" before the front left tyre on his Ferrari Formula 1 car suddenly failed and cost him second place in the British Grand Prix.
Raikkonen was running a comfortable second to Lewis Hamilton’s Mercedes in the closing stages of the Silverstone F1 race, when a delamination of the front left soft Pirelli on Raikkonen’s Ferrari forced him to make an unscheduled second pitstop.
The problem meant Raikkonen ultimately trailed home third, allowing Valtteri Bottas to complete a one-two result for Mercedes and help Hamilton close to within a point of Sebastian Vettel at the head of the drivers’ championship.
Vettel also suffered a front-left tyre failure, which dropped him from fourth to seventh in the race results, while Red Bull had to bring fourth placed finisher Max Verstappen into the pits for a precautionary stop.
Both Vettel and Verstappen complained about blistering on their front tyres in the second half of the race, but Raikkonen said his rubber failed without warning.
"Everything was going more or less normally," Raikkonen explained. "The gap was fine for us. Two laps from the end, I don’t know what happened – before Turn 6 [Brooklands], under the tunnel, the tyre didn’t explode but the rubber part came off suddenly.
"I don’t think I hit anything, everything felt normal before, luckily I came back.
"I struggled a bit after that because the tyre was flapping around, [but] we managed to get a decent position.
"I was very unlucky and, in a way, lucky, but didn’t want to see the same happen to Seb and then a lap later – I don’t know what happened."
Vettel was holding fourth place behind Bottas when his left front tyre deflated through Brooklands and caused Vettel to run off the track at Luffield.
He tumbled down the order as he limped the Ferrari back to the pits and saw his championship lead almost evaporate completely as he fell outside the top six.
Vettel said the tyre failure also caught him by surprise, despite feeling those vibrations during the second stint.
"I don’t think there’s anyone particularly to blame," he said. "Hindsight is great, with hindsight it is easy, but at the time it felt OK.
"Kimi had similar issues and his tyres were at least five or six laps fresher, so I think it caught us both by surprise."
Raikkonen spent the entire race in fruitless pursuit of Hamilton and said Ferrari simply lacked the pace to challenge Mercedes properly at Silverstone.
"It wasn’t the easiest feeling," Raikkonen added. "We had all weekend a few places that were quite difficult for us and in the race it was similar to Friday.
"I tried to hang on to Lewis, tried to keep the gap, but just didn’t have enough speed. We could have been second, but we have some work to be done.
"We had a decent start, but once we fall behind, we had no real chance to beat them."
Lewis Hamilton wins British Grand Prix while Ferrari hits trouble
Lewis Hamilton produced a dominant drive to win the British Grand Prix and slash Formula 1 title rival Sebastian Vettel’s championship lead to a single point after a dramatic finish.
Hamilton led from lights to flag, crossing the line 14 seconds ahead of Mercedes team-mate Valtteri Bottas with Ferrari’s Kimi Raikkonen completing the podium.
There was late drama as Raikkonen and Vettel suffered front left tyre problems with three and two laps to go respectively, when running second and fourth.
Raikkonen pitted and rejoined to take third with Vettel – who had reported blistering after a big lock-up – falling right back to seventh as he had to drive further on his wrecked tyre.
It was Hamilton’s fourth victory of the season, his fourth consecutive British GP win and fifth F1 triumph at Silverstone.
At the start, Raikkonen challenged Hamilton into the first corner, but the leader held firm and set about building an advantage.
Vettel made a slow start, slipping behind Verstappen before retaking the position only for the Red Bull driver to go back past around him on the outside at the Loop.
The race was neutralised when the safety car was deployed to clear debris after Daniil Kvyat ran wide onto the grass, lost control and hit Toro Rosso team-mate Carlos Sainz Jr.
At the restart, Hamilton pushed clear, first holding a steady gap to Raikkonen before putting the hammer down ahead of the pitstops.
Further back, Vettel put pressure on Verstappen, attacking down the inside of Stowe, only for the Red Bull to hold on around the outside.
Verstappen managed to stay ahead under braking for Vale, squeezing Vettel wide into the chicane and prompting the Ferrari driver to raise his hand in frustration.
Vettel was the first of the frontrunners to pit, with Red Bull reacting by bringing Verstappen in next time around.
But a problem with a wheelnut delayed Verstappen, meaning he rejoined behind Vettel and did not have the pace to respond.
Raikkonen pitted soon after, with Hamilton following suit on the next lap and rejoining comfortably in the lead, ahead of Bottas, who had yet to pit having run deep on softs after starting ninth following a five-place grid penalty for a gearbox change.
It wasn’t until lap 33 of 51 that Mercedes called Bottas, the only driver in the top 10 to start on the softs, in for the super-softs, and he rejoined fourth.
He used the fresher, softer rubber to gradually reduce the gap to Vettel and then launched an attack on the run to Club, but the Ferrari driver locked up and kept the position.
On the next lap, Bottas was much closer to Vettel on Hangar Straight and swept around the outside of Vettel with ease before they reached Stowe.
Bottas then inherited second when Raikkonen suffered the tyre issue, with Verstappen pitting late as a precaution and rejoining in fourth, ending a run of three successive retirements.
His team-mate Daniel Ricciardo produced an impressive recovery drive to take fifth, having started 19th after a series of grid penalties for engine component and gearbox changes and dropping to last early on having run into the gravel when trying to pass Kevin Magnussen.
Renault’s Nico Hulkenberg equalled his best finish of the season with sixth, losing out to Ricciardo late on, but his team-mate Jolyon Palmer failed to take the start after reporting brake-by-wire and hydraulic problems on the formation lap.
Esteban Ocon and Sergio Perez gave Force India an eighth double points finish in 10 races with eighth and ninth ahead of Felipe Massa. They had ended up in a three-way battle that developed as they queued behind the long-running Magnussen before the Haas finally pitted.
McLaren again failed to score – although Stoffel Vandoorne was not far behind Massa in 11th. Fernando Alonso retired midway through the race having got up to 14th from his back of the grid start.
RESULTS – 51 LAPS:
|4||Max Verstappen||Red Bull/Renault||52.125s|
|5||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||1m05.955s|
|8||Esteban Ocon||Force India/Mercedes||1 Lap|
|9||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||1 Lap|
|10||Felipe Massa||Williams/Mercedes||1 Lap|
|11||Stoffel Vandoorne||McLaren/Honda||1 Lap|
|12||Kevin Magnussen||Haas/Ferrari||1 Lap|
|13||Romain Grosjean||Haas/Ferrari||1 Lap|
|14||Marcus Ericsson||Sauber/Ferrari||1 Lap|
|15||Daniil Kvyat||Toro Rosso/Renault||1 Lap|
|16||Lance Stroll||Williams/Mercedes||1 Lap|
|17||Pascal Wehrlein||Sauber/Ferrari||1 Lap|
|–||Fernando Alonso||McLaren/Honda||Fuel pump|
|–||Carlos Sainz||Toro Rosso/Renault||Collision|
|–||Jolyon Palmer||Renault||Not started|
Hamilton cleared of blocking Grosjean, keeps British GP pole
Lewis Hamilton will keep his pole position for Formula 1’s British Grand Prix after being cleared of blocking Romain Grosjean in Q3 at Silverstone.
Grosjean was left furious after feeling that he had been impeded by Hamilton on the left-hand turn into Club as he finished his first run in the final shootout session.
The Haas team suspected Grosjean had lost around three tenths of a second in the incident and would have beaten Stoffel Vandoorne to ninth place.
Although the race stewards launched an investigation into the matter, their analysis of the situation was that while Hamilton had got in Grosjean’s way, he had not cost the Frenchman anything.
A statement issued by the FIA said: "The stewards examined video and telemetry evidence and concluded that while GRO may potentially have been affected by the presence of HAM at Turn 16, he was not impeded."
Prior to the stewards’ decision, Hamilton had already apologised to Grosjean and claimed he had received no warning from his Mercedes team over the radio that the Haas driver was approaching him.
"I was coming around to start my lap, Valtteri [Bottas] up ahead, I was trying to get the space," said Hamilton.
"Behind me was one of the Force Indias, who then came in, so there was no one behind me.
"Literally as I was about to get on the gas I looked in the mirror and saw a car, and I tried to get going.
"I don’t know if I got in the way, if I did I apologise.
"I had no indication from the team that anyone was coming. I need to look at the footage.
"I don’t think he was that close when I pulled away, but I will have a look."
|4||Max Verstappen||Red Bull/Renault||1m28.130s||1.530s|
|6||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||1m28.902s||2.302s|
|7||Esteban Ocon||Force India/Mercedes||1m29.074s||2.474s|
|12||Daniil Kvyat||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m30.355s||–|
|13||Carlos Sainz||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m31.368s||–|
|19||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||1m42.966s||–|
British Grand Prix practice: Lewis Hamilton pips Sebastian Vettel
Lewis Hamilton set the pace in final practice for the British Grand Prix, beating Formula 1 championship rival Sebastian Vettel by just 0.032 seconds on Saturday morning.
With the session commencing with an 80% chance of rain, most drivers opted to get out on track early on before the bad weather had chance to hit, which it finally did in the final 20 minutes.
Valtteri Bottas, who has been hit by a five-place grid penalty for a gearbox change, led the way in the opening runs on soft tyres, setting an early benchmark of 1m28.827s in the first 10 minutes.
His Mercedes team-mate Hamilton then took the top spot with a 1m28.747s on the yellow-marked rubber, which stood as the best time until he put on super-soft tyres just shy of the halfway mark and set a 1m28.063s to go seven tenths clear of the pack.
Bottas was only able to come within 0.151s of Hamilton on his first run on super-softs, and it was Ferrari driver Vettel who emerged as the three-time champion’s closest rival as he slotted into second, just 0.032s adrift.
With the rain arriving 15 minutes later, Hamilton’s effort stood as the best time of the session – and the weekend so far – with Vettel staying second and Bottas improving marginally to complete a top three covered by just 0.074s.
Kimi Raikkonen was fourth-fastest in the second Ferrari, a full 0.669s behind Hamilton on the super-soft tyres, and nearly eight tenths up on fifth-placed Nico Hulkenberg in the Renault.
Best of the Red Bull drivers was Daniel Ricciardo in sixth, 1.549s slower than Hamilton, followed by the Haas of Romain Grosjean and Max Verstappen, whose best time was set on softs.
Verstappen did attempt a super-soft run, but left it too late and was caught out by the rain, running off-track at Brooklands and quickly returning to the pits.
Felipe Massa’s Williams and Stoffel Vandoorne’s McLaren completed the top 10, Vandoorne eclipsing team-mate Fernando Alonso by 0.050s.
Besides Verstappen, the only other drivers not to set their best time on super-softs were Toro Rosso’s Carlos Sainz Jr, who was 17th-fastest, and the second Williams of Lance Stroll, who propped up the timesheets, 1.4s slower than Massa.
All drivers headed out in the closing stages of the session on intermediate tyres, an extra set of them having been supplied by Pirelli for the session.
A handful of late incidents showed how tricky conditions had become – Ricciardo spinning but avoiding the wall exiting Club and Marcus Ericsson pirouetting on the approach to Vale.
|6||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||1m29.612s||1.549s||15|
|8||Max Verstappen||Red Bull/Renault||1m29.904s||1.841s||13|
|12||Esteban Ocon||Force India/Mercedes||1m30.172s||2.109s||19|
|15||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||1m30.416s||2.353s||16|
|16||Daniil Kvyat||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m30.504s||2.441s||20|
|17||Carlos Sainz||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m30.515s||2.452s||19|
British Grand Prix: Bottas pips Hamilton in second Friday practice
Valtteri Bottas stayed on top in second practice for Formula 1’s British Grand Prix, beating Mercedes team-mate Lewis Hamilton by only 0.047 seconds.
Bottas’s benchmark from the morning was beaten around 15 minutes into the afternoon session at Silverstone, as Hamilton posted a 1m28.780s on soft tyres before quickly improving to a 1m28.543s.
That put Hamilton a full six tenths clear of the field, led by Ferrari’s Kimi Raikkonen, until Bottas switched from mediums to super-softs at the 30-minute mark and set a new best of 1m28.496s.
When Hamilton took super-softs, he ran off the track at Chapel and told his engineers he feared he had damaged the car in the process. His soft-tyre time still kept him in second place.
With teams shifting their focus towards longer runs for the latter half of the session, Bottas’s best effort stood as the quickest time of the day.
Raikkonen was third-quickest, going 0.338s slower than compatriot Bottas on his super-soft run and 0.128 faster than the second Ferrari of Sebastian Vettel.
There was late drama for Raikkonen when he suffered a moment of snap oversteer at Becketts and span into the gravel, although he got going again without outside assistance.
Max Verstappen was best of the Red Bull drivers in fifth, 0.602s off the pace on super-softs, while team-mate Daniel Ricciardo was sixth, nearly half a second down on the sister car on the same tyre.
Nico Hulkenberg, Felipe Massa, Fernando Alonso and Esteban Ocon completed the top 10, all using super-softs, with Williams driver Massa spinning at Chapel late in the session after setting his best time.
Massa also attracted the attention of the stewards for impeding Verstappen, having passed the Red Bull driver around the outside at Club while both drivers were on long runs.
Carlos Sainz Jr had a major off-track excursion at the Maggotts/Becketts complex at the very start of the session, which consigned the Toro Rosso driver to the pits until the final 40 minutes.
He emerged to set the 11th quickest time, ahead of team-mate Daniil Kvyat in 12th.
Renault’s Jolyon Palmer also had a spin at Brooklands, ending up 18th ahead of only the two Saubers.
PRACTICE TWO RESULTS:
|5||Max Verstappen||Red Bull/Renault||1m29.098s||0.602s||32|
|6||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||1m29.586s||1.090s||35|
|10||Esteban Ocon||Force India/Mercedes||1m30.383s||1.887s||42|
|11||Carlos Sainz||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m30.555s||2.059s||26|
|12||Daniil Kvyat||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m30.562s||2.066s||34|
|13||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||1m30.624s||2.128s||43|
Bottas sets British GP practice pace as Vettel tries F1’s shield
Valtteri Bottas set the pace in opening practice for the British Grand Prix as Sebastian Vettel became the first Formula 1 driver to trial the shield cockpit protection device.
Bottas used the soft compound Pirelli tyres to clock a 1m29.106s at an overcast Silverstone, 0.078 seconds quicker than Mercedes team-mate Lewis Hamilton.
Championship leader Vettel, who was sixth fastest, headed out of the garage at the start of the session with the screen, which extends along the car’s nose in front of the driver, attached to his Ferrari.
He completed a single installation lap and then returned to the garage where Ferrari removed the device and switched attention to its weekend programme.
The medium compound – the hardest tyre available this weekend – was the rubber of choice for the early installation laps before Kimi Raikkonen fitted the super-softs and set the first time of the session with a 1m32.533s.
He traded quickest laps with the Red Bulls of Daniel Ricciardo and Max Verstappen, with Verstappen coming out on top initially.
Mercedes then sent Bottas out and he went quickest on the soft tyres with a 1m30.788s.
Hamilton lapped three tenths faster with his first real effort on the softs but his team-mate responded immediately to become the first driver to dip into the 1m29s.
Bottas continued to improve, gradually bringing his time down to a 1m29.106s, quicker than last year’s pole position time of 1m29.287s.
Red Bull emerged as Mercedes’ closest challenger, with Verstappen and Ricciardo third and fourth quickest respectively, but both their laps were set on the super-softs.
Raikkonen was the leading Ferrari in fifth, 1.031s off the pace but four tenths quicker than team-mate Vettel, who spun at Becketts and flatspotted his tyres.
Fernando Alonso, running the more-powerful ‘spec 3’ Honda engine in his McLaren again this weekend, was eighth quickest on the super-softs, a tenth behind Toro Rosso’s Daniil Kvyat.
Felipe Massa, whose Williams team adopted a split approach with its upgrades after a troubled Austrian GP by running different configurations on his and Lance Stroll’s cars, was ninth.
Stoffel Vandoorne made it two McLarens in the top 10, just half-a-tenth slower than team-mate Alonso.
Antonio Giovinazzi borrowed Kevin Magnussen’s Haas and set the 17th quickest time, nearly half-a-second off team-mate Romain Grosjean.
Jolyon Palmer missed much of the opening part of the session with his Renault up on stands in the garage, but the team eventually got him back out and he ended up 18th quickest after 16 laps.
PRACTICE ONE RESULTS:
|3||Max Verstappen||Red Bull/Renault||1m29.604s||0.498s||26|
|4||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||1m29.942s||0.836s||19|
|7||Daniil Kvyat||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m30.895s||1.789s||21|
|11||Carlos Sainz||Toro Rosso/Renault||1m31.200s||2.094s||24|
|12||Esteban Ocon||Force India/Mercedes||1m31.210s||2.104s||32|
|13||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||1m31.297s||2.191s||34|
“A pretty decent day”
Scuderia Ferrari drivers convinced that further progress can be made
Silverstone – As is typical of Fridays, Scuderia Ferrari drivers had a lot of things to get through in the two practice sessions. For what it’s worth on a day in which neither points nor grid places are given, P2 ended with Kimi setting the third fastest lap time of 1’28”828, with Seb a close fourth at 1’28”956. A new engine had been fitted to the SF70H since morning and different fuel levels were tested during both sessions.
“It was a pretty decent day”, said Kimi, “a bit more straightforward session than on other occasions, and we had no issues. Since this morning the feeling had been ok, but obviously at the beginning there was a bit of guesswork with the conditions, as always when you first run at a track. It could have been a bit better, but it was not too bad either. Tomorrow will be a different day, we can only try to do our best and I’m sure we can improve. In qualifying and mainly on Sunday we’ll see if it is enough”.
Raikkonen says he’s doing his best after Marchionne ‘laggard’ claim
Kimi Raikkonen says he is doing his maximum to get better Formula 1 results following comments from Ferrari president Sergio Marchionne saying he was a "a bit of a laggard".
Marchionne told reporters at the Red Bull Ring that Raikkonen needed to show a "higher level of commitment", having been overshadowed by teammate Sebastian Vettel so far this year.
Asked about Marchionne’s comments, the 2007 world champion, who finished fifth in the Austrian Grand Prix, insisted he is trying as hard as possible to get his season back on track.
"Obviously I want to do well," said Raikkonen.
"My team wants to do well, and I can only do the best that I can. It’s not like I’m not trying.
"Unfortunately it’s not been very straightforward sometimes, but that’s part of the plan and we keep pushing and I’m sure things will work out better."
The German has won three races and leads the championship with 171 points, while Raikkonen is on 83 down in fifth position.
Raikkonen’s contract with Ferrari expires at the end of the season, and Marchionne’s comments keep up the pressure on him.
"I think Kimi has got to show a higher level of commitment to the process," Marchionne told Reuters before the start of the Austrian Grand Prix.
"There are days when I think he’s a bit of a laggard, but we’ll see."
Austrian Grand Prix: Bottas fends off Vettel for second F1 win
Valtteri Bottas held his nerve against a charging Sebastian Vettel to claim his second Formula 1 victory in the Austrian Grand Prix.
Mercedes driver Bottas fended off a late attack from the Ferrari to secure the win by just six tenths of a second.
Vettel still extended his championship lead to 22 points over Lewis Hamilton, who recovered well from eighth on the grid after his gearbox-change penalty but was denied a podium by Daniel Ricciardo.
Bottas made a lightning getaway from pole position to comfortably lead Vettel into the first corner, although his start was so good it prompted an investigation into whether he had jumped it.
He had to wait 20 laps to be cleared – with the review revealing his reaction to the lights changing was just 0.2s – and by this time had stretched his lead to 7.6s over the chasing Ferrari.
Bottas ran a long opening stint, eventually pitting on lap 41 of 71 and emerging with a reduced lead of just 2.5s.
Vettel engaged in an ebbing-and-flowing pursuit of Bottas, rallying late on and getting within DRS range but eventually falling just short.
An aggressive first lap set Ricciardo on his way to his fifth podium in a row.
Ricciardo attacked Kimi Raikkonen into Turn 1 but had to continue the move all the way up the hill into Turn 3, eventually claiming the place and forcing the Ferrari wide in the process.
Raikkonen dropped behind Romain Grosjean’s Haas as a result of Ricciardo’s move, and it took two laps for the works Ferrari to finally make it past the customer car at Turn 4.
The longest first stint of any of the frontrunners meant Raikkonen, who stopped on lap 44, fell behind the recovering Hamilton as the strategies played out.
Hamilton had been gifted a place at the start by a clutch-related poor getaway from Max Verstappen, and worked his way past Sergio Perez’s Force India and Grosjean in the opening stint as well.
He complained about his tyres once he swapped his super-softs for ultra-softs, but charged in the closing stages and got within DRS range of Ricciardo with three laps to go – though he could not find a way past.
Raikkonen finished a lonely fifth, while Grosjean scored his best result of the season with sixth.
Behind Grosjean came the two Force Indias, with Perez leading Esteban Ocon, while Williams duo Felipe Massa and Lance Stroll charged into the points after a dismal qualifying left them 17th and 18th on the grid.
They were helped by a first-lap collision that was caused when Verstappen started slowly from fifth on the grid and was collected at Turn 1 by Fernando Alonso, whose McLaren had been rear-ended by Daniil Kvyat.
The Toro Rosso driver was handed a drive-through penalty for the incident, which led to Verstappen stopping further round the lap and Alonso returning to the pits immediately with terminal damage.
Kevin Magnussen, who complained of no power steering, and Carlos Sainz Jr were the only other retirements.
RESULTS – 71 LAPS:
|3||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||6.012s|
|7||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||1 Lap|
|8||Esteban Ocon||Force India/Mercedes||1 Lap|
|9||Felipe Massa||Williams/Mercedes||1 Lap|
|10||Lance Stroll||Williams/Mercedes||1 Lap|
|11||Jolyon Palmer||Renault||1 Lap|
|12||Stoffel Vandoorne||McLaren/Honda||1 Lap|
|13||Nico Hulkenberg||Renault||1 Lap|
|14||Pascal Wehrlein||Sauber/Ferrari||1 Lap|
|15||Marcus Ericsson||Sauber/Ferrari||2 Laps|
|16||Daniil Kvyat||Toro Rosso/Renault||3 Laps|
|–||Carlos Sainz||Toro Rosso/Renault||Engine|
|–||Max Verstappen||Red Bull/Renault||Collision|