Hamilton controlled the lead throughout the race. After starting from pole position, he watched the start and held the lead over his Mercedes teammate Valtteri Bottas.
Finn got three laps before the finish of a defect in the left front tire and dropped significantly in the standings. Red Bull then decided to summon second Max Verstappen to the pits for a new soft set in an effort to complete the fastest lap.
Thanks to this, Hamilton’s lead at the front increased to 32 seconds, which turned out to be crucial, when he too got a defect in the left front tire in the middle of the last lap, which is significantly stressed in the fast corners of the British circuit.
In a slow drive, Hamilton finally managed to reach the finish line in first position and win 5.8 seconds ahead of Vestappen.
“Everything went relatively smoothly until the last round. The tires were great. Valtteri really pushed incredibly. I took care of the tires, it seemed that he didn’t solve it at all, “said Hamilton after the race.
“When I heard his tire burst, I just took care of mine and everything looked good. The car kept turning, there was no problem. In those last laps I started to slow down and then it simply burst on the flat. I just noticed that its shape had changed a bit. At that moment, my heart was somewhere in my throat, because until I stepped on the brakes, I didn’t know if I would make it. And you could see the tire coming off the rim.
“Then I just drove and kept the speed, because sometimes it flies off and damages the wing and other things. I just prayed I would get there and not be too slow. I almost didn’t go through the last two turns. I think maybe we should have stopped in the pits when we saw the wear.
“I have never experienced anything like this in the last round. My heart almost stopped. ”
Bottase deprived the defect of podiums and points
Worse for the defect of the left front tire, which came three laps before the finish of the race, the second driver of Mercedes Valtteri Bottas paid for it.
In addition, Bottas got a flat tire on the finish line and had to go around the whole wheel before reaching the mechanics. From the second position, where the whole race was up until then, he fell to the final eleventh place.
“It simply came to our notice then. I knew I had a defect and I had to go around the whole bike, “said Bottas.
“We knew we had a long stint ahead of us on the hard orchard. Of course, I tried to put pressure on Lewis. But towards the end, I began to feel bigger and bigger vibrations. I reported it to the team and at the end I thought it might be a problem, so I started taking care of the tires. But it happened very suddenly, I couldn’t predict anything. ”
For the next big prize, which will be hosted again by Silverstone next weekend, Pirelli will bring softer tire compounds.
“It will be a problem for everyone. With the mixes we will have next weekend, it will not be possible to leave only one stop, “predicts Bottas.