Hindsight is a wonderful thing: The British Grand Prix review, brought to you by BIC

Monday, Aug 3rd 2020, 8:40 am | Category: Formula One

There felt like an inevitability to Sunday’s proceedings at Silverstone, for the first of the double-header UK Grands Prix. Such was the dominance of Mercedes in qualifying on Saturday, they were a full one second ahead on the front row of the grid. Whilst that came as no surprise to many, given their dominance so far this season and the track being particularly suitable to the Brackley team, there was hope that some brilliance from Verstappen in the Red Bull or one of the Racing Points could interrupt what seemed to be the inevitable.



That predictability rang true for all but two laps of the race. Both Hamilton and Bottas had reasonable starts and, despite a couple of early safety cars, the two Mercedes sped off into the Midlands countryside seemingly without a care in the world. Fast forward 50 laps and F1 reminded us of the beauty of a sport with so many unpredictable elements. Firstly Bottas’ front left tyre went, resulting in a very slow coast to the pits for a new set, ruining his chances of a podium. Then Carlos Sainz, running fourth, suffered exactly the same issue. All eyes were on Hamilton, just a few corners away from victory. Sure enough, his front left also went, with Verstappen just 20 seconds behind. Red Bull had taken the decision, just a lap before, to stop for a ‘free’ pit stop, thinking it was far enough behind and ahead of cars either side to not matter, in the hope of setting a fastest lap and gaining a championship bonus point. Hindsight is a wonderful thing, however, but this meant that the gap between him and Hamilton was just too much on the final leg. Without that optional pit stop, Verstappen would have surely taken Hamilton on the final corner, but it was not to be.

Leclerc in the Ferrari finished a promising third, avoiding all the carnage around him, with an impressive fourth for Ricciardo in the Renault. McLaren fans will have mixed fortunes after Sainz’ tyre blowout, but Norris ended up a promising fifth, yet again demonstrating Mclaren’s massive improvements, to the delight of many fans in Bahrain.



Throughout the race week, there have been some who have criticized the sport for being too predictable. Whilst the last two laps showed how F1 can surprise, it would also not be right to criticize the Mercedes overall dominance. At times like this, we should remember that we are watching one of the all-time greats. Mercedes’ dominance is only superseded by Hamilton’s brilliance and it is an honor for fans of the sport to be a part of his journey. This season, he is on the way to matching the great Michael Schumacher with seven world championships. Remember he has a hugely capable team-mate in exactly the same car, yet he consistently delivers.

Credit should also go to the management team at F1 and the FIA, which yet again showed that its Covid-secure procedures could enable a global sport to take place, albeit behind closed doors, in a safe environment. Indeed, when Sergio Perez tested positive before the race weekend, these protocols ensured that the race could proceed without interruption. Perez is understood to be in good health and is expected back once he has completed quarantine.



F1 will now remain at Silverstone for its second race this weekend. With many team headquarters located near the circuit, one wonders what magic can be achieved in the factories by those trying to close the gap to the leaders in the coming days.

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