Lewis Hamilton wins 2017 British Grand Prix at Silverstone

PUBLISHED: 14:34 16 July 2017 | UPDATED: 09:18 17 July 2017

Lewis Hamilton on the podium after winning the 2017 British Grand Prix at Silverstone [Picture: Sean Ramsell]

Lewis Hamilton on the podium after winning the 2017 British Grand Prix at Silverstone [Picture: Sean Ramsell]

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Formula One racer Lewis Hamilton won the 2017 British Grand Prix at Silverstone.

The 32-year-old Mercedes superstar from Hertfordshire claimed his fifth Silverstone success today (Sunday) with a supreme drive from pole position, leading all the way and setting the fastest lap.

It was his fourth successive win at Silverstone and he dedicated his dominant display to young motor racer Billy Monger, who lost his legs in a high-speed horror crash and was a guest of Hamilton and Mercedes at Silverstone this weekend.

Hamilton said on the podium: “It wasn’t so easy [this win]. It’s never easy.

“The feeling I can’t really describe. It’s amazing to be up here.

“Billy, I want to thank you very much for coming this weekend, this race is for you.”

Hamilton crossed the finish line more than 14 seconds clear of Silver Arrows colleague Valtteri Bottas, who climbed from ninth on the grid to take second to complete a Mercedes one-two.

Kimi Raikkonen, who was running second, was forced into a late pit stop for a change of tyres with two laps to go and dropped down to fourth at the point behind Ferrari team-mate Sebastian Vettel.

However, in a dramatic turn of events, Vettel then also suffered a puncture himself – and saw his World Championship lead all but disappear.

The German F1 driver eventually crossed the line seventh in the provisional results behind the Red Bulls of Max Verstappen and Daniel Ricciardo and Nico Hulkenberg’s Renault.

After starting the race with a 20-point advantage, Vettel now leads the drivers’ standings by just one point.

Three-time F1 world champion Hamilton’s historic victory also see him equals Jim Clark and Alain Prost’s record with five British Grand Prix wins.

After scoring his fifth career Grand Slam – claiming pole, the victory, fastest lap and leading every lap of the Grand Prix – Hamilton said: “I’m so happy... this has got to be one of my sweetest wins here.

“I was gunning for this victory. There was so much negativity ahead of the race, with people questioning how I prepared for the race.

“But this weekend has been one of my strongest of the weekend.

“I made a solid start and then after that I managed the car and the balance, and the boys did a fantastic pit stop. I really can’t find a fault at the moment.”

Bottas came home in second to secure the Silver Arrows’ second 1-2 of 2017.

Hamilton said: “The team did an exceptional job this weekend and Valtteri obviously drove a stormer today. I’m proud of him.

“It’s great to have him in the team.”

As for Mercedes’ main rivals, Hamilton added: “I’m surprised to see the issues the Ferrari had because I didn’t see any debris.

“I did not expect to come away from this weekend just one point behind Sebastian.

“This result really opens up the championship – and we go to Hungary next, where I’ve always gone well.”

Hamilton also paid tribute to the Silverstone fans.

“Every time I came around Turn 7, I could see the fans cheering every single lap,” he said.

“It was really reminiscent of 2008, my first Grand Prix win here. I’ve got some great supporters here, not only in the crowd, but in the garage as well.

“I’ve got my brother here, some of my aunties and family has come, too. There’s this amazing young kid who’s come from South Africa, Michael, who is fighting cancer.

“It was amazing to see him. And Billy Monger is with us, who is just such an inspiration.”

Runner-up Bottas was delighted to claim a podium after starting from ninth after a five-place grid penalty.

He said: “What a race! I’m really happy for us as a team, to get the second 1-2 of the season.

“Of course, I would have liked to win, but I’m happy anyway because that was definitely one of my best ever races.

“I had to fight hardcore out there a couple of times, but I ended up in a good position.

“We could actually go longer than expected in the first stint on the Softs and the tyres were really good.

“In the last stint the team told me to just take care of the tyres, because we saw a few failures out there for some other teams, but for me they were fine.”

Mercedes-AMG Petronas Motorsport (330 points) now lead the Constructors’ Championship by 55 points from Ferrari (275 points) in P2.

Bottas said: “We’re just at the halfway point of the season and it could definitely be worst. It’s still just my first year with the team and I’m still right in the championship fight.

“As a team we did a really good job today. The strategy right from the start of the race worked really well.

“It was a flawless race for us and the 1-2 was our prize – the team really deserve this. We definitely got lucky with Kimi’s puncture in the end, to take P2, but that’s racing and today luck was on our side.”

Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff was delighted afterwards.

He said: “I think that was probably the best race I have been part of since joining the team in 2013!

“We are so delighted for Lewis: he prepared for the weekend in the way he knew was right for him, then came here and delivered in qualifying and the race.

“He got pole, led every lap, won the race and also set the fastest lap; it was a perfect performance.

“And then Valtteri rounded it off for the team by climbing all the way from P9 to P2, with a little bit of good fortune along the way, but applying consistent pressure on every lap of the race.

“He picked his way through the field, kept the performance in the tyres at the right time and he richly deserved his second place finish; it was a brilliant drive.”

Wolff added: “We are now at the halfway point of the season with 250 points still to score. There will be a lot of talk about the championship standings but not within the team.

“We have our eyes on one thing only and that’s the next race in Hungary, so we can go into the summer break in an even stronger condition.”

Hamilton’s victory slashes Vettel’s championship lead to a solitary point.

James Allison, the team’s technical director, said: “Lewis has all but wiped out the deficit to Vettel in one hammer blow and the team has taken another big leaps in the constructors’ race thanks to a tremendous display from Valtteri, whose work this afternoon completely erased the gearbox penalty he was forced to take this weekend.

“It feels like we are starting to build some good momentum in recent races and hopefully we can deliver the same sort of performance in two weeks’ time before heading into the summer break.

“Our work in the next fortnight will focus on optimising every single detail so that we arrive in Hungary prepared for all of the challenges that race can throw at us.”

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