“It Was a pretty beautiful day,” Lewis Hamilton said after winning the Hungarian Grand Prix in a canter, and – from his point of view – he was not wrong there.
The Mercedes driver’s success, based on a remarkable opening three laps where he pulled eight seconds on the rest of the field in tough damp conditions, place him in the tournament lead for the first time this season.
It attracted Hamilton degree with Michael Schumacher as the driver with the most wins in a single circuit.
It Was the 86th success of Hamilton’s career, and he is now just five short of Schumacher’s all-time album of 91 – a list that appears increasingly likely to collapse this year.
And A remarkable tally that is 22 clear of another closest motorist, that is – you guessed it – Schumacher.
Perhaps not Only this, but it had been the climax to a weekend where Mercedes had shown an enormous level of excellence over the remainder of the field.
The Only negative was that the rushed and haphazard anti-racism demonstration by the drivers prior to the race – a topic where a disappointed Hamilton did not mince his words later.
‘I’m not giving up any points unless I must’
Hamilton And team-mate Valtteri Bottas were a second quicker than anybody else in qualifying, and also at the race Hamilton had enough of a gap from the final laps to produce a’free’ pit stop for fresh tyres by which he could secure quickest lap – and also take the stage off the Finn.
Securing This two-point swing was symbolic of the level of determination Hamilton has to win his seventh title – and draw level with Schumacher on a different all-time album – within this coronavirus-affected season which still doesn’t have a finished calendar.
“I Know what it’s like to lose the championship by a single point and I am not giving up any unless I must,” Hamilton stated. “I know how essential it’s to maximise each moment.
“We Do not know what reliability will be like. We don’t know how long the season is going to be. Valtteri had a fantastic first race. And in the time he had quickest lap. I had the difference and I believed it was essential to get that point, particularly as I felt I’d earned the gap I’d.”
In Those remarks is evidence of how much it hurts Hamilton that he dropped out on championships in 2007 and 2016 in how he did.
In 2007, he must have become the first man in history to win the title for a rookie. However a plan miscalculation at the Chinese Grand Prix by McLaren left him out too long on worn tyres, and he slipped into the gravel trap and retirement when they eventually called him .
Those Errors opened the door for Ferrari’s Kimi Raikkonen, and if Hamilton had reliability issues at the final race, Ferrari exploited Raikkonen’s team-mate Felipe Massa from the guide by minding his final pit stop and handed the win to Raikkonen, who took the title from Hamilton by that single point he mentioned.
Then in 2016, at Mercedes, Hamilton was much more severely affected by reliability compared to team-mate Nico Rosberg.
Hamilton’s Superiority over Rosberg meant he could still have won the name in spite of the many points he lost as a result, but he didn’t help himself with two or three bad starts and just two or three off-form race weekends. Nevertheless, it had been the reliability that really cost himand he lost out by only five points.
Hamilton Learned a hard lesson that year, and he emerged as a more powerful competition, moving his all-round game on to another degree. He has kept the mercurial speed but added another level of consistency and focus on the bigger picture, and it’s made him an even more powerful competitor.
It Was this consistent excellence that acquired Hamilton his titles in 2017 and 2018 contrary to a Ferrari automobile that was quicker for much of those seasons, but had been driven and run by a driver and team who made more mistakes.
This Is what Bottas has to face this year, in a year which looks already as though it’ll be a private battle between the two Mercedes drivers.
“At This stage, yes,” Bottas stated,”based on two distinct monitors, we seem the very best automobile and occasionally with a big margin. If you ask anyone, they’d predict it will be between me and Lewis.
“However You just never know how the season will go and when we start to think that way it’s going to be an error so we’ll continue to keep pushing.”
Bottas Got the season off to a good start, with a dominant win in Austria, while Hamilton created a set of small but important errors and ended fourth.
But In both following weekends, it is Bottas who has been found wanting – in the context of the guy he must beat.
End A wet qualifying session at the 2nd Austrian race 1.4 minutes slower than Hamilton cannot have helped Bottas’ confidence.
He Fought back well , but then neglected to pull off the same strategy bet with which Hamilton had won the race last year – carrying an excess pair of tyres and racing up to the trunk of Verstappen in an attempt to pass until the end.
“My Performance has been great,” Bottas said. “There’ve been a few I’d even say possibly unlucky events that have cost me a little bit but performance-wise I am pleased.
“This is a very encouraging start. I do have the pace this year to win the title but it is an individual struggle every weekend.
“It Didn’t go right in Austria wet qualifying or this weekend to the race beginning but each weekend I have learnt massively. I’d pole in Silverstone last year so I’m confident going there (next). I know Lewis is strong there as he’s strong everywhere, but I believe in my ability to conquer him.”
How can Mercedes do it?
He Managed to extricate the vehicle from the barriers and the mechanics performed wonders to change front wing and 2 components of the front suspension in 12 minutes before the beginning.
Verstappen He despatched Stroll in four laps but there was nothing he can do about the man in the lead.
For Anyone not part of Mercedes, this is already looking like a dispiriting season. However, while domination may not make a fantastic spectacle, there is only respect and respect for them inside the sport.
On Thursday, Hamilton explained this year’s Mercedes as”the best car we have had so far” and on Friday technical manager James Allison was asked how the staff continue to set such a high bar.
“We have Been a well-funded group, we’ve been a stable team, we have had solid support from our parent firm and consistent leadership,” Allison explained.
“However I believe one of the best things about the area is the fact that it’s a good culture. And the culture is one of not resting on its laurels, never feeling entitled to the performance we’ve enjoyed and being willing to maneuver the challenge of finding improvement in the car down from the top of the team through the layers at the team.
“So Everyone feels a part of making the car stronger, racing the car more ardently, providing us with the surroundings where we can make that strong vehicle.
“All Parts of the many-cogged system that is an F1 team perform their role in producing what you see. It is not a single response; it is down to a group that has a good culture within it.”
Hamilton said:”I definitely did not leave anything around the table now, I’d say.
“The Thing is, we all return now (in the news conference to the engineers’ room) and the way we work is that there is two or three moments of everybody smiling and then everyone’s dead serious – when they’re not already dead serious.
“You And we get back to work.
“We Get our headsets on and we talk about the car. And when we discuss the car it’s not:’Everything was great.’ It’s:’This could be better, this could be better, which could be better’
“Valtteri Is really great with his input and we try to push the staff forward, and everybody is just working to determine how they can improve.
“No Matter whether there is or isn’t a gap between ourselves and a different group, We just keep pushing and keep elevating. And for me that’s the most Impressive thing about this team.”
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