Tag Archives: Hungarian GP

Lewis Hamilton takes first victory for Mercedes at Hungarian Grand Prix

With his first win for Mercedes now under his belt, Lewis Hamilton has now emerged as a serious title contender, taking a commanding victory in Hungary.

After his pole position yesterday, the Brit remarked that it would be a “miracle” if he could cling onto the lead by Lap 2. He did more than that though, stretching out a lead to his rivals during the race, and eventually cruising to the chequered flag.

At the start, Lewis got a clean start, while Sebastian Vettel was pressurised by Romain Grosjean and Nico Rosberg. Romain was squeezed off the racing line by the Red Bull, while Nico swiftly went backwards – clipping Felipe Massa’s front wing at Turn 5, and falling to 12th place. Grosjean then firmly held off Fernando Alonso, almost shoving him off the road to hold his position.

Up front, Hamilton and Vettel toyed with the DRS zone, but the Mercedes’ straight-line speed was enough for now. Grosjean kept the pressure on Vettel in the opening laps, but couldn’t get close enough to make a move.

It was expected that Mercedes would be forced to pit first, and there were few surprises when Hamilton pitted on Lap 10. He emerged behind Jenson Button, who would turn out to play a massive role in the development of the Grand Prix. Not wanting to be held up by his former teammate, Lewis executed a pass on the McLaren the following lap – which probably won him the race.

Like the race leader, Vettel also emerged behind Button, who had started on the prime tyres. However, Sebastian’s poor straight-line speed was to cripple his chances for victory, as while Hamilton sped away up front, the Red Bull languished behind an increasingly lacklustre McLaren. The same fate befell Grosjean, and the two could only watch as Lewis pulled out a 10 second gap.

A tense battle began to form, with Grosjean stalking Vettel, who in turn was watching Button’s pace carefully. Sebastian pounced first – on Lap 23, he pulled a brave move on Button at the unlikely spot of turn 4. Grosjean was eager to also put a move on Jenson, but whacked his wheel off the McLaren’s in the process, earning him an investigation by the stewards. Fernando Alonso, who by now had caught up to this battle, swiftly passed Button one turn later to continue his charge.

With possible wheel damage, Romain pitted on Lap 25 to check for any issues. He emerged behind Felipe Massa, and wasted no time trying to pass the Ferrari. While he pulled a fantastic move around the outside of turn 4, he had put all 4 wheels off the track while doing so, and suddenly he was under investigation again.

A few laps later, the Lotus driver was handed a drive-through for the Massa incident, while the Button clash would be investigated after the race. This scuppered any chances of a race win, but handed the advantage to his teammate, who had executed a 2-stop strategy plan to perfection.

Amidst the tense battles between Vettel, Grosjean, Button and Massa, Raikkonen had quietly used a longer second stint to leap into second place. He wasn’t the only one either – Mark Webber started on primes, and despite not making a single notable pass all day, he had crept up to 5th place, after temporarily leading the race earlier.

Annoyed after losing so much time, Vettel was forced to chase Raikkonen for second. But there was more than a slight chuckle heard in the Lotus garage soon after, after Vettel pitted from his second stop, and emerged behind Button yet again. Luckily, Jenson pitted within 2 laps, but even more damage had been done to the Red Bull’s chances.

After Vettel’s third pit stop of the day, he was left with 15 laps to close the gap to Kimi. With the advantage of fresher tyres, he quickly caught the Lotus, but passing it was another matter. Another tense battle ensued, with Sebastian having a look almost every single lap, but not being able to complete the pass. He had one final shot with 2 laps to go, trying to go around the outside of Turn 4, but Raikkonen slammed the door in Vettel’s face. In Kimi’s mind, this was payback for Sebastian beating him to the line in Germany the race before.

While it was mostly plain sailing for Hamilton in the second half of the race, there was a huge scare with 6 laps to go. Nico Rosberg, who had never really recovered from his first-lap shenanigans, suffered an engine fire and retired from the race. Worried faces were aplenty on the pit wall, but Lewis was unfazed, and took the chequered flag for the first time in 2013.

Raikkonen took second, as he does every time Hamilton wins in Hungary. Vettel was disappointed with 3rd, while Fernando Alonso just didn’t have the pace to keep up with the leaders in 4th. Romain Grosjean put the Ferrari under pressure in the final stint, but was held back. A 20-second time penalty for hitting Button negated any gains he would have made anyways.

Webber was 6th, Button 7th, Massa 8th and half a minute behind his teammate, Perez 9th, while Pastor Maldonado took the first point for Williams this season, although he was helped by Rosberg’s late retirement. Nico Hulkenberg was handed a drive-through penalty for pit lane speeding, so he could only manage 11th. Daniel Ricciardo couldn’t convert a good qualifying position into a result, and finished 15th.

The championship battle is now more interesting than ever. While Vettel now has a slightly better lead over Raikkonen and Alonso, he now must deal with the threat of Hamilton and Mercedes in time. The question is, can Lewis recover the 48-point deficit in time?

Hamilton scrapes unlikely Hungary pole position

After an entire weekend struggling with a car that was supposedly off the pace, Lewis Hamilton has enjoyed a sudden turnaround in luck, with a surprise pole position for the Hungarian Grand Prix.

The Mercedes team languished in both Friday practice sessions, but were able to claw back the deficit to Red Bull and Lotus, with Hamilton and Rosberg taking 1st and 4th on the grid. A potential McLaren resurgence failed to materialise, while Daniel Ricciardo enjoyed another impressive qualifying performance.

Q1

Immensely hot conditions met the drivers on Saturday afternoon, with track temperatures approaching 50 degrees Celcuis for the entire session.

Esteban Gutierrez and Sergio Perez, both of which missed running in Saturday morning practice, were both able to compete. The Sauber driver locked up his tyres on several of his flying laps though, and qualified 17th.

Paul di Resta suffered another torrid session, and was knocked out of Q1 for the third time in 4 races. This time, the team were not to blame, as a simple lack of grip left the Force India sliding all over the track.

Caterham appeared to have pulled out a gap to Marussia over the 3-week break, with Pic and Van der Garde finishing comfortably ahead of Bianchi and Chilton.

Drivers knocked out of Q1:

17) Esteban Gutierrez – 1:21.724

18) Paul di Resta – 1:22.043

19) Charles Pic – 1:23.007

20) Giedo van der Garde – 1:23.333

21) Jules Bianchi – 1:23.787

22) Max Chilton – 1:23.997

Q2

In a turn of events as shocking as the Pope announcing he’s a Catholic, Mark Webber suffered a KERS failure and electrical issue in Q2, ruining any chances of competing at the front. His final lap put him 7th, but the team were unable to fix his issues for Q3.

Searing lap times from Sebastian Vettel and the Mercedes duo dropped the lap times below the 1:20 mark, while further back the gap between 8th and 12th places was less than a tenth of a second.

Daniel Ricciardo did his chances of a Red Bull drive no harm with another Q3-reaching effort, alongside Sergio Perez, although Jenson Button didn’t do as well. Their last-gasp attempts put Adrian Sutil and Nico Hulkenberg out of the final session.

Drivers knocked out of Q2:

11)  Adrian Sutil – 1:20.569

12) Nico Hulkenberg – 1:20.580

13) Jenson Button – 1:20.777

14) Jean-Eric Vergne – 1:21.029

15) Pastor Maldonado – 1:21.133

16) Valtter Bottas -1:21.219

Q3

Both Rosberg and Hamilton, as well as Alonso and Raikkonen, did their first Q3 laps on scrubbed soft tyres, resulting in their lap times nearly a second off Vettel’s pace. Mark Webber made no appearance in this session, the team deciding that his car issues negated any advantages to setting a time.

Sergio Perez set a very slow time, albeit on the medium tyre, giving him a strategic advantage for tomorrow’s race. Felipe Massa and Daniel Ricciardo lined up ahead of the McLaren driver.

The top 6 all went for one last attempt in the final few minutes, all on new soft tyres. Oddly enough, despite going extremely fast in the first sector, both Rosberg and Grosjean were unable to unseat the Red Bull. Fernando Alonso took what would become 5th position, with Kimi Raikkonen one place behind.

Lewis Hamilton had played down his chances of a win earlier this weekend, but pole position was still in reach, as demonstrated with a 1:19.388 lap time – just 0.038 seconds faster than Vettel. The Red Bull driver will start from the dirty side of the grid, but watch out for Romain Grosjean in 3rd, who has looked threatening all weekend.

Points standings after Hungarian Grand Prix

Driver Standings

Driver Points
1 Fernando Alonso 164
2 Mark Webber 124
3 Sebastian Vettel 122
4 Lewis Hamilton 117
5 Kimi Raikkonen 116
6 Nico Rosberg 77
7 Jenson Button 76
8 Romain Grosjean 76
9 Sergio Perez 47
10 Kamui Kobayashi 33
11 Pastor Maldonado 29
12 Michael Schumacher 29
13 Paul di Resta 27
14 Felipe Massa 25
15 Bruno Senna 24
16 Nico Hulkenberg 19
17 Jean-Eric Vergne 4
18 Daniel Ricciardo 2
19 Timo Glock  0
20 Charles Pic  0
21 Vitaly Petrov  0
22 Heikki Kovalainen 0
23 Pedro de la Rosa 0
24 Narain Karthikeyan 0

Constructor Standings

Team Points
1 Red Bull-Renault 246
2 McLaren-Mercedes 193
3 Lotus-Renault 192
4 Ferrari 189
5 Mercedes AMG 106
6 Sauber-Ferrari 80
7 Williams-Renault 53
8 Force India-Mercedes 46
9 Toro Rosso-Ferrari 6
10 Caterham-Renault 0
11 Marussia-Cosworth 0
12 HRT-Cosworth 0

Aborted start was due to Schumacher stopping out of position

The FIA has clarified as to why the start of the Hungarian Grand Prix was aborted.

Viewers only saw flashing orange lights at the start/finish line, then Michael Schumacher being pushed back into the pit lane, and then a team radio snippet of him stating that he turned the engine off.

It has emerged that Schumacher only turned off his engine due to the flashing orange lights, which were used because the Mercedes driver himself had not parked within his designated spot on the grid.

Schumacher eventually started the race from the pit lane, before a drive-through penalty, a loss of tyre telemetry, and a puncture forced him to retire.

Hamilton fends off Lotuses for Hungary win

Lewis Hamilton has taken a well-deserved victory in Hungary, after holding off both Romain Grosjean and Kimi Raikkonen at different periods of the race. The Lotuses eventually finished 2nd and 3rd, with championship leader Fernando Alonso 5th. Mark Webber and Jenson Button had poor races, while Michael Schumacher’s race pretty much over before it even begun. Here is what happened:

The first start was aborted, due to an engine problem resulting in Michael Schumacher stalling on the grid. At the second start, Lewis Hamilton held his lead, while Sebastian Vettel hassled Romain Grosjean for 2nd. However, the Lotus held his position, and Jenson Button soon took advantage and moved up to 3rd.

Mark Webber made an excellent start on the medium tyre, leaping up to 7th. Championship leader Fernando Alonso moved up to 5th, while struggling teammate Massa fell to 9th.

Schumacher pitted at the end of the first lap for medium tyres, but his race was completely ruined, after he was handed a drive-through penalty for speeding in the pit lane.

After the opening laps, Alonso began to lose pace, and a sizeable queue of cars began to form behind the Ferrari. Raikkonen in 6th attempted to get into position to make a pass, but a KERS failure meant that the Lotus failed to make a move. Kamui Kobayashi surprised many by taking his first pit stop as early as lap 8, taking on the medium tyre.

The top 2 began to tear away from the rest of the field, going 6 seconds ahead of the dueling Button and Vettel behind. Hamilton managed to eke out a 2.5 second lead, and managed to hold it all the way to his first pit stop.

Button was the first of the frontrunners to stop, and just about held his lead against Vettel, once the Red Bull took on the option tyre. Him and Grosjean were the only frontrunning drivers on the softer compound, and soon began to catch their on-track rivals. Alonso lost out the most at the first stops, losing 5th place to Kimi Raikkonen.

Despite being on the faster tyre, Romain was unable to pass the McLaren, partially due to the nature of the track, and also because of him being unable to close the gap in the DRS zone. Vettel, in the same situation, stated to his team that “I can do much faster than this”, being held up by Button.

With overtaking proving more and more difficult, both McLaren drivers were told to switch to “Plan B” – believed to be a 3-stopper. Button was the first of the two to pit again, releasing Vettel into 3rd, and taking on another set of options. However, he emerged behind Bruno Senna, and got stuck behind the Williams for several laps.

Once Vettel took on new tyres, he emerged easily ahead of Jenson. Having seen what happened, the Lotus team opted to pit Grosjean early, to avoid the same type of incident. Hamilton then pitted, and once the second round of stops had calmed down, the top 3 had closed in to within 3 seconds of each other. Raikkonen inherited the lead, with a 14-second gap between him and Hamilton, although he was yet to make a second stop.

With some searing pace, Raikkonen pushed as much as he could, then pitted on lap 46. He emerged 2nd, only 3 seconds behind Lewis, and with much fresher tyres. Entering the final 20 laps, there was only 6 seconds covering the top 4.

Further back, Pastor Maldonado was battling Paul di Resta for 12th place. As the Force India made a mistake, the Williams driver attempted to out-brake Di Resta, but ended up thumping the Force India off the track to take the position. The stewards took a dim view of the knock, and handed Maldonado a drive-through penalty.

Interestingly, both Raikkonen and Hamilton were informed of KERS issues with their cars, limiting their ability to pass and defend against each other. With 15 laps to go, the Lotus was within a second of the McLaren.

Amidst the battle for the lead, Michael Schumacher’s Mercedes was finally retired. After all the issues with the start, the team soon lost tyre telemetry, and opted to retire the car with 9 laps to go.

Although Raikkonen appeared to have the faster car, he was simply unable to make a move on the McLaren. The gap remained close all the way to the flag, and Lewis Hamilton crossed the line 1.03 seconds ahead of the Lotus. Grosjean held 3rd, with Vettel chasing him down similar to Raikkonen.

Alonso did well in damage limitation, holding 5th against Button, Senna and Webber. Felipe Massa was invisible all race, finishing 9th, with Nico Rosberg 10th in a dismal weekend for Mercedes.

Hamilton storms to Hungary pole position

Lewis Hamilton has taken his 22nd career pole position, and the 150th for the McLaren team. He will start the Hungarian Grand Prix ahead of Romain Grosjean, who qualified 0.3 seconds behind.

Sebastian Vettel and Jenson Button were 3rd and 4th, while the Ferrari drivers struggled for pace, while Webber and Schumacher didn’t even make it into Q3. Here is what happened:

Q1

With a scorching 45 degree track temperature, the Lotus cars were unsurprisingly the first out. Kimi Raikkonen’s 1:23.273 was the first fast lap of the day. Fernando Alonso was set to pip that time, but was held up by a Marussia.

Raikkonen soon improved by another half a second. Second-placed Jenson Button could only manage a 1:23.3 for the time being. However, teammate Lewis Hamilton took another 3 tenths off the fastest time.

Felipe Massa made several attempts to set a lap time, but on each occassion was held up by Michael Schumacher. On the fourth lap, he managed to move into 5th, but was held up again on his subsequent lap.

Lewis was the first to move into the 1:21 zone, after 6 laps on the medium tyre. Bruno Senna continued on his good practice pace, taking second position. Oddly, Fernando Alonso was struggling, and was forced to take on the softer tyre to continue into Q2, even if he was beaten by Paul di Resta.

With only a few minutes left on the clock, Button, Perez, Vettel and Webber all were teetering above the drop zone. All but Sebastian went out again to improve their lap times. Vettel was very nearly caught out by a charging Kamui Kobayashi, but survived in 17th place.

Drivers knocked out in Q1:

18) Daniel Ricciardo – 1:23.250

19) Heikki Kovalainen – 1:23.576

20) Vitaly Petrov – 1:24.167

21) Charles Pic – 1:25.244

22) Timo Glock – 1:25.476

23) Pedro de la Rosa – 1:25.916

24) Narain Karthikeyan – 1:26.178

Q2

The Mercedes drivers were the first out on track, Michael Schumacher abandoning his first lap after a mistake at turn 4. Nico Hulkenberg and Felipe Massa quickly went into the 1:21 zone, spurring a stream of fast laps from other drivers.

Again the Red Bulls struggled, initially going 5th and 6th, while the Lotuses took first and second. Soon after, Hamilton slashed another 0.5 seconds off the fastest time.

The Ferraris improved to 2nd and 3rd, Alonso finding it difficult to beat even Massa. After a flurry of activity, Mark Webber was left in 10th place, and Bruno Senna pushed him even further down the order. A dust cloud pulled up by Pastor Maldonado distracted Michael Schumacher, leaving him in 17th place.

Mercedes concluded a dismal afternoon, with Nico Rosberg 13th, and little prospects for the race.

Drivers knocked out in Q2:

11) Mark Webber – 1:21.715

12) Paul di Resta: 1:21.813

13) Nico Rosberg – 1:21.895

14) Sergio Perez – 1:21.895

15) Kamui Kobayashi – 1:22.300

16) Jean-Eric Vergne – 1:22.380

17) Michael Schumacher – 1:22.723

Q3

After an impressive Q2, Nico Hulkenberg was straight out on track for Q3 – albeit on the medium tyre compound.

Lewis Hamilton was set to go fastest, but a massive slide at turn 8 ended his lap. In the first 5 minutes, only Raikkonen, Grosjean, Hamilton and Button set times, the other drivers waiting in the pits.

Sebastian Vettel was set for provisional pole, but lost 0.2 seconds in the final few corners. Pastor Maldonado had to carve his way past both McLarens and Vettel, but still managed 4th place for the moment.

Vettel gave up rather quickly in Q3, leaving the Lotuses, McLarens and Alonso to battle it out at the front. The Ferraris found themselves down in 6th and 7th place, Alonso managing to pip Massa. Kimi Raikkonen was only 5th, but teammate Grosjean nearly beat Hamilton, taking 2nd place. Vettel remained in 3rd, with Button close behind in 4th.

But nobody was able to topple Hamilton’s lap. Despite Grosjean’s final attempt coming close, the McLaren had already set another lap, 0.3 seconds faster than his Lotus rival. The race is Lewis’ to lose tomorrow, but the weather may play a huge part in proceedings…

Hungarian Grand Prix stats and facts

Jenson Button’s 200th Grand Prix was most certainly a successful one, granting him his 2nd victory of the season. Here are the statistics from last weekend:

  • The Hungarian Grand Prix saw 88 pit stops in total – a new F1 record.
  • After Nick Heidfeld’s exhaust failure and Vitaly Petrov’s slow pit stop, Renault failed to score a single point in a race for the first time since the 2010 Japanese Grand Prix, where both cars retired within several laps of the start.
  • Paul di Resta took his best career result finish with 7th place.
  • Button has become the 11th driver in F1 history to participate in 200 races or more. Currently Rubens Barrichello is the only driver above 300.
  • Jenson’s 11th Grand Prix win is as many as Jacques Villeneuve, Rubens Barrichello and Felipe Massa.
  • Massa took his 14th fastest lap, his first since Australia this year.
  • It was the 100th Grand Prix event for Toro Rosso, the current V8 engine formula, and Nico Rosberg.
  • With Felipe Massa losing 2 places at the first corner, the only driver who has never lost a place on the first lap at any race in 2011 is Narain Karthikeyan.
  • Sebastian Vettel’s 23rd pole position is only one off Niki Lauda and Nelson Piquet. However, his starts-to-win ratio is nearly 3 times higher than either of these two drivers.
  • Red Bull have taken their 13th podium finish in a row, a feat which only 5 teams have ever beaten. The record is 53 by Ferrari, from Malaysia 1999 to Japan 2002. The team have also taken the last 12 pole positions in a row.

Points standings after Hungarian Grand Prix

Driver Standings

Driver Points
1 Sebastian Vettel 234
2 Mark Webber 149
3 Lewis Hamilton 146
4 Fernando Alonso 145
5 Jenson Button 134
6 Felipe Massa 70
7 Nico Rosberg 48
8 Nick Heidfeld 34
9 Vitaly Petrov 32
10 Michael Schumacher 32
11 Kamui Kobayashi 27
12 Adrian Sutil 18
13 Sebastien Buemi 12
14 Jaime Alguersuari 10
15 Sergio Perez 8
16 Paul di Resta 8
17 Rubens Barrichello 4
18 Pedro de la Rosa 0
19 Jarno Trulli 0
20 Vitantonio Liuzzi 0
21 Jerome D’Ambrosio 0
22 Heikki Kovalainen 0
23 Narain Karthikeyan 0
24

25

26

27

Pastor Maldonado

Timo Glock

Daniel Ricciardo

Karun Chandhok

0

0

0

0

Constructor Standings

Team Points
1 Red Bull-Renault 383
2 McLaren-Mercedes 280
3 Ferrari 215
4 Mercedes GP 80
5 Renault 66
6 Sauber-Ferrari 35
7 Force India-Mercedes 26
8 Toro Rosso-Ferrari 22
9 Williams-Cosworth 4
10 Lotus-Cosworth 0
11 HRT-Cosworth 0
12 Virgin-Cosworth 0

Button wins enthralling Hungarian Grand Prix

Jenson Button won today’s Hungarian Grand Prix, after a scintillating race with changing conditions. Sebastian Vettel was 2nd, with Fernando Alonso 3rd. Lewis Hamilton would have won, but a spin, bad strategy call, and drive-through penalty dropped him to 4th. Here is the full report:

The race began under intermediate conditions, after rain fell earlier this morning. Vettel made an exellent start to keep his lead, while the McLarens battled for 2nd. Fernando Alonso moved into 5th, while Nico Rosberg blitzed his way into 4th. Adrian Sutil spun from 8th all the way back to 20th.

Almost immediately, it became apparent that Vettel was struggling on the green track, and Lewis was all over him. A dive around the outside of Turn 2 nearly worked, but on Lap 5 a slip from Vettel allowed the McLaren to take the lead.

While Sebastian fell into the clutches of Button, Alonso sliced past Schumacher and Rosberg – then ran wide the next lap, allowing the latter Mercedes back through. Another excusrion off the track let teammate Massa through, but probable team orders meant Felipe was easily re-passed on the main straight.

A spin and tap with the barriers the next lap only served to drop Felipe to 9th place, while his teammate pushed his way past Rosberg for 4th. Red Bull were the first to test the drying track, putting Webber out on slicks – a move that was followed by Ferrari with Massa.

Jenson Button tried the super-softs out the following lap. A fastest final sector by Webber proved the track was dry enough, and Hamilton pitted from the lead on Lap 13 for the soft compound. Vettel and Alonso used the same move.

The slightly damp conditions suited Button to the bone, passing Vettel for 2nd place. Meanwhile, Webber got his way past Alonso to take 4th, having pitted from 7th.

The stewards were called to intervene on the race, with a drive-through for Maldonado for pit lane speeding, and an investigation on Kovalainen for an unsafe release. Meanwhile, Jarno Trulli was the first car to retire, after his Lotus suffered an oil leak.

Both Ferraris were on the move, with Alonso harrassing Webber for 4th, and Massa pushing Schumacher for 8th. However, the racing was disrupted by a retirement by Nick Heidfeld, whose Renault’s exhaust blew, forcing him to stop at pit exit.

Both Ferraris, followed by Lewis Hamilton, stopped in anticipation of a safety car, as well as taking on a fresh set of tyres. Button led the race for a sole lap, before following his teammate into the pits. This left Vettel in charge of the race – but he was 3 seconds off the pace. While the Red Bull pitted, Michael Schumacher spun at the same point Massa did, but the Mercedes was out of the race.

A mistake under acceleration allowed Massa to sweep straight past Nico Rosberg to take 7th position, then passing Kamui Kobayashi a few laps later. A drive-through penalty was issued to Sergio Perez, for overtaking while under yellow flags for Heidfeld’s incident.

After failing to pass Webber due to the difficult track, Alonso pitted early on Lap 36. Webber decided he’d had enough of the softs, and made the strange call to switch to the prime tyre on Lap 40. While Fernando was now in front of the Red Bull, Webber would not need to stop again – but his pace would be another matter.

Lewis pitted from the lead, taking on the super-soft compound. Vettel made the same move 2 laps later, but Jenson Button decided to stay out for one more lap. However, Button copied Webber’s strategy, taking on soft tyres, and completely mixing up the strategy for the frontrunners.

Jenson exited the pits ahead of Alonso and Vettel, the latter being caught out by Fernando’s early stop. However, Sebastian found a way past the Ferrari soon after the stops.

While most people were predicting two different strategies to decide the race, the weather had other ideas. With absolutely no warning, rain began to fall down upon the circuit, and Hamilton spun out of the lead. He was facing back-to-front, and while turning his car around, he nearly slammed into Paul di Resta.

Button now led, while Alonso pitted for primes. The top three – Button, Hamilton and Vettel – were now separated by 3 seconds. Lewis found extra grip on the damp track, and a slip by Button meant his teammate was back into the lead.

But, Jenson was having none of it. A DRS-assisted move pushed him back into the lead of the race, before the same mistake allowed Hamilton to retake the lead. On Lap 53, Rosberg and Hamilton deicded to take on intermediate tyres. Jerome D’Ambrosio made the same call, but a spectacular – but extremely dangerous – spin in the pit lane threw him to the back of the field.

The inters weren’t working in the damp conditions, and as the track began to dry out, the race turned on its head for Hamilton. He was served with a drive-through for his dangerous rejoining of the track.

Lewis opted to stop first, then serve his drive-through on Lap 58, dropping him to 6th position. Both Webber and Hamilton eased their way past Massa, before he stopped for another set of tyres.

A huge train of cars soon began to form behind Kamui Kobayashi, as the Sauber’s tyres began to desintigrate. Di Resta, Buemi, Rosberg and Alguersuari all passed Kamui in quick succession. Webber and Hamilton ran into the back of this pack, Mark lost pace, and Lewis sweeped around the Red Bull to take 4th place.

While Alonso began to catch Vettel, there weren’t enough laps left to make a move. With a comfortable lead, Jenson Button crossed the line to win the Hungarian Grand Prix. Vettel and Alonso took their podium positions, while Hamilton will be disgusted to be 55 seconds behind his teammate, after leading the race for so long.

Mark Webber was 5th, and never looked like winning. Massa was 6th, while Paul di Resta was an excellent 7th.

Note: I’ll be away for most of next week, so there will be no after-race articles for a while.

Vettel pips Hamilton to Hungary pole position

Sebastian Vettel took his 8th pole position of the year for the Hungarian Grand Prix.

He came out on top after a climactic battle for top spot, with Fernando Alonso and Lewis Hamilton both making mistakes on their final runs. Lewis was 2nd, ahead of his teammate Button. Alonso was beaten by Felipe Massa for the first time in 17 races. Here is the full report:

Q1

Ricciardo moved even closer to his teammate

Ricciardo moved even closer to his teammate

All of the leading cars were easily able to use the prime tyres, to save a set for later.

Vettel went fastest, before being beaten by Hamilton, who was then knocked off the top by Alonso. Button, Massa and Webber were off the pace of their teammates.

Jarno Trulli’s new steering system was a success, allowing him to get within 5 tenths of Sebastien Buemi, who only used the prime tyres in Q1, and ended up 18th. After his grid penalty sustained in Germany, he will start 23rd.

Daniel Ricciardo was within 0.15 seconds of Vitantonio Liuzzi, who both were faster than Jerome D’Ambrosio.

Drivers knocked out in Q1:

18) Sebastien Buemi – 5-place grid penalty

19) Heikki Kovalainen – 1:24.362

20) Jarno Trulli 1:24.534

21) Timo Glock 1:26.294

22) Vitantonio Liuzzi 1:26.323

23) Daniel Ricciardo – 1:26.479

24) Jerome D’Ambrosio 1:26.510

Q2

Kobayashi was well beaten by Sergio Perez

Kobayashi was well beaten by Sergio Perez

Alonso once again led the way in Q2, setting a 1:20.262 on the super-softs.

Only two drivers failed to use the option tyres – Lewis Hamilton and Pastor Maldonado. Pastor didn’t set a lap, opting to save a set of tyres for tomorrow’s race. Lewis managed to get through to Q3 without using the super-softs.

Adrian Sutil, Vitaly Petrov and Sergio Perez managed to make it through to the shoot-out, at the expense of their teammates. Rubens Barrichello found no pace in the Williams, and finished 15th.

Drivers knocked out in Q2:

11) Paul di Resta – 1:22.258

12) Vitaly Petrov – 1:22.284

13) Kamui Kobayashi – 1:22.435

14) Nick Heidfeld – 1:22.470

15) Rubens Barrichello – 1:22.684

16) Jaime Alguersuari – 1:22.979

17) Pastor Maldonado – No time set

Q3

Vettel will be chased by the McLarens to the first corner

Vettel will be chased by the McLarens to the first corner

Despite having very little practice on the super-soft tyre, Hamilton quickly set the fastest time in Q3 – and was the first man to enter the 1:19 range. Vettel moved into 2nd, with Alonso 3rd.

Schumacher, Rosberg, Sutil and Perez stayed in the pits for the first part of the session. All of the cars went out in the final few minutes, with the exception of Perez.

Vettel and Hamilton traded fastest sectors, before a mistake on the final corner by Lewis allowed the Red Bull to take provisional pole. Alonso had a poor final lap, allowing himself to be beaten by Felipe Massa, for the first time in 17 races.

Jenson Button quietly moved into 3rd place, and will start on the clean side of the grid. Mark Webber was well off the pace, and will start 6th. Adrian Sutil split the Mercedes cars, finishing in 8th position.

Times in Q3:

1) Sebastian Vettel – 1:19.815

2) Lewis Hamilton – 1:19.978

3) Jenson Button – 1:20.024

4) Felipe Massa – 1:20.350

5) Fernando Alonso – 1:20.365

6) Mark Webber – 1:20.474

7) Nico Rosberg – 1:21.098

8 ) Adrian Sutil – 1:21.445

9) Michael Schumacher – 1:21.907

10) Sergio Perez – No time set

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