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Lewis Hamilton has won his first race for Mercedes with a great performance in today’s Hungarian Grand Prix.
Hamilton controlled the race throughout and took the checkered flag, finishing ahead of Kimi Raikkonen and championship leader, Sebastian Vettel. Fellow Red Bull driver, Mark Webber also had a strong race, after the disappointment of qualifying, by finishing in 4th place ahead of Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso.
Romain Grosjean’s day didnt go quite as smoothly, finishing in sixth place after being given a drive-through penalty and a post race time penalty for a collision with Jenson Button
Hamilton had a great start, getting off the grid excellently and was able to avoid the chaos going on behind him. Vettel seemed to have a slow start and was immediately being challenged by Grosjean, who tried going round the outside of the German. With everybody battling for position there was then contact between Niko Rosberg and Felipe Massa, causing damage to Massa’s front wing.
After the first set of pit-stops, it was Hamilton who had the clear track in front of him after getting past former teammate, Jenson Button. Vettel was unable to do the same and was stuck behind Button for many laps, allowing Grosjean to gain on him. The high temperatures were beginning to have an effect it seemed as Sebastian was told over the radio to stay out of the McLaren’s slipstream, therefore keeping the air in front of him cooler.
Finally on lap 29, Vettel found his way past the McLaren at turn 4. Grosjean then saw a chance to capitalize and made his move on Button. The two collided however, causing slight damage to Button’s front wing. Next up for Grosjean was the Ferrari of Felipe Massa, who on older tyres, was caught easily. Grosjean made what seemed like a great move, around the outside of Massa at turn 4. The stewards saw this differently however and gave Grosjean a drive through penalty. The Lotus driver was also reprimanded for his collision with Button after the race and was given a 20s penalty after the race.
Whilst all of this was going on Hamilton had been building up a great lead out in front and by the time he made his final pit-stop was leading by 15.4s. Hamilton came out just behind Mark Webber who was also trying to lap a back-marker . In a move much similar to that made by Nigel Mansall on Artyon Senna in 1989, Hamilton overtook Webber superbly through turns two and three.
After making his final stop, Vettel came out behind Kimi Raikkonen but was quickly informed that the Finn’s tyres were much older than his. Meanwhile further down the order, lap 65 proved to be the last of the day for Niko Rosberg with an engine failure ending the German’s race. This was his third retirement of the season.
As the race came to an end, Vettel closed right up to Raikkonen and attempted to overtake on lap 68. The Lotus driver was having none of it however and showed Vettel the edge of the track, defending his 2nd place. Vettel tried to claw the Finn back in but was unable to do so, with a couple of lock-ups causing him to loose time.
Just as an added bonus to Hamilton’s great race, he was able to lap his old McLaren, now in the hands of Sergio Perez on the penultimate lap as he went on to victory.
Today’s result means that Sebastian Vettel leads the championship by 48 points ahead of Kimi Raikkonen, who moves 1 point ahead of Fernando Alonso. Lewis Hamilton remains in 4th place, but he is now only 10 points behind Raikkonen.
Race results: Championship standings: