Styrian Grand Prix – Lewis Hamilton has taken victory for Mercedes, with Valtteri Bottas in P2, as Ferrari’s drivers collided on the first lap.
Lewis Hamilton has led home teammate Valtteri Bottas at the second round of the 2020 Formula 1 World Championship. The polesitter led almost the entirety of the race, only losing the lead during the pitstop sequence.
However, it was bad news for Ferrari, as their two drivers collided at Turn 3 on the opening lap of the race. Vying for position, Charles Leclerc attempted to dive up the inside of Sebastian Vettel. Leclerc’s car mounted Vettel’s with both cars suffering terminal damage.
After a brief Safety Car to clean up after the Ferrari collision, Hamilton spend the first stint of the race slowly edging away from Max Verstappen to enjoy a 5 second lead by Lap 25 when the Red Bull driver pitted. Taking on the Mediums, Verstappen came out in P3. Hamilton pitted two laps later and also took on the Mediums, emerging ahead of Verstappen but behind Bottas. The Finn stayed out for another 10 laps before pitting, coming out in P3 to make the order Hamilton, Verstappen, Bottas for the second half of the race.
From there, Bottas chipped away at Verstappen but made little impact until the closing stages. Verstappen picked up some minor front wing damage which didn’t help his pace, and he eventually fell into the clutches of the Mercedes. Fending him off with some tremendous defence through Turn 4, Verstappen was passed by Bottas using DRS on the following lap to decide the podium positions. He pitted on the following lap to attempt to snatch the fastest lap, ultimately unsuccessful, but fell to over thirty seconds behind by the flag.
Alex Albon finished in P4 and eleven seconds behind Verstappen but only after the Dutch driver’s second stop – up until then, he had been around thirty seconds behind the podium positions.
Lando Norris snatched P5 with a thrilling last lap attack on the Racing Point drivers. With Lance Stroll battling with Daniel Ricciardo, Norris pounced to pass them both before passing Sergio Perez at the last corner. The Mexican had looked on to steal P4 from Albon in the closing stages, but damaged his front wing attempting a pass at Turn 4. This damage was enough to fall back into the clutches of his teammate and Norris. Perez held on to take P6 by less than a tenth over Stroll as they powered across the finish line.
Daniel Ricciardo finished P8 after fading towards the end of the race. He started on the Medium tyre, switching to the Softs for the second half, but ran out of tyres. Carlos Sainz finished P9 for McLaren, with Daniil Kvyat claiming the final points position for Alpha Tauri.
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