A thrilling fightback by defending world champion Lewis Hamilton in the Hungarian Grand Prix saw the Brit extend his lead at the top of the 2019 driver standings to 62 points.
It was Hamilton’s eight win of the campaign, and with his grip on the title strengthened as result of his victory, he’s looking good for his sixth world title.
Max Verstappen Pole Position
Max Verstappen had had secured his first career pole in Hungary, becoming the fourth youngest driver to ever do so, and during the early stages of the race the Dutchman and Red Bull looked in control of proceedings. However, Hamilton was rampant in his Mercedes from the beginning as he looked to find a way past Verstappen, with Red Bull chief Christian Horner admitting they were helpless to fend off Hamilton, who was in a faster car.
A Battle Between The Best
The Hungarian Grand Prix was very much a battle between Hamilton, undoubtedly the greatest driver of this generation, and the man likely to lead the next in Verstappen. The action between the pair seemed to heat up as pit stops approached, with Hamilton closing the gap between himself and Verstappen, which saw Red Bull react by bringing Verstappen in early on lap 25.
Hamilton, who Mercedes left on the rack for a further 6 laps, was pushing Verstappen hard just 4 laps after pitting, but on a track notoriously hard form overtaking on, it was going to take all of Hamilton’s expertise to make it past Verstappen. After a move to take Verstappen on the outside of Turn Four narrowly failed, Hamilton was equipped with fresh medium tyres with 22 laps remaining, in the hope they’ll get the chance to hit back at Verstappen with fresher tyres in the closing stages.
Hamilton Proves His Worth
It was the final throw of the dice in many respects, and one that looked like it wouldn’t bear fruit, however with 13 laps to go, Hamilton was once again eating up Verstappen’s lead. With 5 laps remaining, Hamilton was bearing down on Verstappen at full throttle, and his superior speed saw him make light work of Verstappen round the outside of Turn One at the beginning of lap 67, which completed an unbelievable race for both Hamilton and his team.
Superb Team Effort
Speaking following his epic victory, Hamilton said, “I’m tired which is how it should be. I feel really grateful for the day and for the team for continuing to believe in me and push to the limits. We’ve been together seven years and it never gets old and it always feels brand new like a new win for us and if it was not for these guys and the guys back at the factory, it wouldn’t be possible.”
Positives For Max
Max Verstappen, who drove the best race possible, said, “We were just not fast enough. I tried everything I could on that hard tyre to stay alive. Still, second, fastest lap, a good weekend overall. Congrats to Lewis, he was pushing me really hard. I like that. Still a good weekend for us. We were just lacking a bit of grip. We tried a one-stop, they had the opportunity for two and that worked out well.”