Lewis Hamilton won a controversial British Grand Prix. The controversy happened on Lap 1 when Hamilton and Max Verstappen came together at the high speed corner, Copse. Verstappen was running on the outside and slightly ahead of Hamilton, when Lewis missed the apex of the turn and clipped Max’s rear right tire. This collision caused Verstappen to spin off track and hit the tire barrier at 51Gs on the right side of his vehicle. Max was able to walk away on his own power but was assessed at the medical and eventually sent to a local hospital for further examination after he complained of dizziness, he has since been cleared from hospital. The incident led to a red flag that caused the race to be stopped for 45 minutes.
During the restart, Hamilton was assessed a 10-second penalty for the incident and had to serve it during his next pit stop. He was running second behind Charles Leclerc and had his teammate Valtteri Bottas and McLaren’s Lando Norris within a 10-second gap of him. Hamilton pitted on Lap 28, the pit stop to roughly 30 seconds to complete and he was released behind Norris. Three laps later, he was ahead of Norris. Nine laps after that, Mercedes told Bottas to allow Hamilton to go past since he was on a new set of tires and Valtteri’s tires were beginning to blister. Now, Hamilton had 12 laps to go to get past Leclerc and take his record-tying eighth win at Silverstone. On the penultimate lap, Hamilton was within passing distance of Leclerc going into Copse. He barely avoided another incident with Leclerc but managed to successfully pass Charles to claim victory.
David Croft, lead commentator of Sky Sports F1, made a cheeky comment that “England brought it home on penalties” in reference to the result of the Euro 2020 final.
Post-Race Social Media Commentary
After the race, there were negative, racist and abusive comments hurled towards Hamilton after his controversial victory. Formula One made a joint statement with the FIA, the governing body of motor sports, and Mercedes-AMG Petronas F1 Team acknowledging and condemning the comments on social media regarding the in-race collision and expressing their support of Lewis Hamilton. Red Bull Racing sent out a statement through their social media acknowledging their on-track rivalry but it does not support the comments Lewis received post-race. All parties demanded that those who participated in this abhorrent commentary should be held accountable for their actions.
Tough Result for Red Bull
Red Bull had a tough Sunday. Sergio Perez started the race in the pit lane after a spin during the Sprint that forced them to retire his car. Therefore, their hopes to win the race were solely on Max Verstappen. Once Verstappen crashed out on Lap 1, all hopes were dashed. During the red flag delay, the commentators mentioned that if Perez did not finish in the points and Mercedes finished P1 and P2, they would be tied in the constructors championship going into the next race at Hungary. At the end of the race, when Hamilton was securely in P1 and Bottas was in P3, Red Bull decided to pit Perez to get him on the soft tires to steal the fastest lap point away from Mercedes. Perez finished in P16 and out of the points. Mercedes made up significant ground in the constructors by receiving 40 points and minimizing their gap to three points. Hamilton also minimized his thirty three point gap to Verstappen to eight points.