Vettel claims first win in Hungary after epic race
Ferrari driver Sebastian Vettel won the Formula 1 Hungarian Grand Prix for the first time after he was the fastest in what turned out to be an absolutely epic race. Red Bull also got a reason to enjoy with Daniil Kvyat finishing second and Daniel Ricciardo third.
Undeniably, this was most the interesting race of the season so far. There were so many ups and downs, collisions and penalties, but the only thing that remained constant was Vettel’s lead. The four-time champion drove confidently from start to finish and claimed his first victory in Hungary. Surely this race will be well remembered as one of the craziest over the past few years.
After everything that has been witnessed so far in the season, nobody expected that Mercedes would stay off the podium and McLaren would be better placed than the reigning champion and championship leader. Without a doubt, McLaren must be absolutely delighted after both its drivers scored points, for the first time this year.
The start of the race itself was very interesting with both the Ferraris moving up. Vettel took the lead while Kimi Raikkonen was second, leaving the Mercedes drivers behind them. Soon after, Lewis Hamilton slid out of the track but somehow managed to get back, only to 10th place.
Valtteri Bottas also had an excellent start as he went ahead of Daniel Ricciardo, while Nico Hulkenberg jumped six places to fifth and another Force India driver Sergio Perez moved up five places to eighth position. In the meantime, Felipe Massa got a five seconds penalty for being out of position on the start.
Hamilton slowly started to move up, but he was too far behind Vettel who had a comfortable lead ahead of his teammates Raikkonen and Nico Rosberg, Ricciardo and Hulkenberg. It was an action packed race with some interestng duels and small clashes. Hamilton pushed hard to pass Ricciardo, while Pastor Maldonado caused a small accident with Sergio Perez and received a drive-through penalty.
Vettel and Raikkonen were completely safe on their positions as Rosberg on third was more than seven seconds behind Finn. A safety car was employed in lap 44 after Nico Hulkenberg went into the barriers because of losing front wings. With 20 laps to go, that was a chance for Mercedes’ as gaps were reduced and additional obstacle was that Raikkonen encountered some problems with his car.
Once the race had restarted, Vettel maintained the lead position, while Rosberg passed over Raikkonen. Hamilton caused a collision with Ricciardo when the Red Bull driver almost overtook him and later received a drive-through penalty after which dropped to 12th. After Raikkonen had to retire, Ricciardo moved up to third, while Daniil Kvyat was fourth and Max Verstappen straight out of nowhere jumped to fifth place.
However, that wasn’t the end of the madness at Hungaroring. Ricciardo and Rosberg had a collision after which the Mercedes driver had to go to the pit as his left back tyre got punctured and there were four more laps to go. This was an opportunity for Kvyat to move up to the second spot, leaving behind his teammate who finished third. Max Verstappen in Toro Rosso was in fourth position.
Fernando Alonso finished fifth leaving champion Hamilton on sixth. The seventh place was won by Romain Grosjean in Lotus, Nico Rosberg was eighth at the end, while Jenson Button completed a good day for McLaren finishing eighth. The last point was scored by Sauber’s Marcus Ericsson.