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Lewis Hamilton takes historic victory at a rain-soaked British Grand Prix

Written by Owen Bradley

Lewis Hamilton battled the tricky conditions and competition to take a historic ninth victory at Silverstone, and his first victory since 2021.

George Russell would hold the lead from his teammate Lewis Hamilton at the start, as Max Verstappen overtook Lando Norris around the outside of Turn 4.

Norris' McLaren struggled to get the Medium compound tyres up to temperature in the opening stages, with teammate Oscar Piastri all over the back of Norris at the start of the second lap.

However, as DRS (Drag Reduction System) was activated for the start of the second lap, the Mercedes drivers would hold a gap of over one second to Verstappen behind, as Red Bull and other teams began reporting rain to fall on the back half of the circuit in a few laps.

Sergio Perez would begin coming through the field after starting from the pit lane, the Mexican was using the Hard compound tyres, doing the alternate strategy compared to those at the front of the field, who started on the Medium compound tyres.

Credit: Red Bull Content Pool

On Lap 15, as the rain began falling, Lando Norris would overtake Verstappen down the Hangar straight, the Red Bull not having quite enough pace to run with the Mercedes as the rain began falling heavier.

Just a lap later, the other McLaren of Oscar Piastri would also overtake Verstappen down the Hangar straight and into Stowe, as the conditions deteriorated massively. Lewis Hamilton would then come through on George Russell, Russell struggling with the wet conditions.

Both the Mercedes would run off at the exit of the first corner as Norris caught them both, overtaking Russell around the outside at Turn 4. Just a lap later, Norris would then overtake Lewis Hamilton for the lead of the race as Piastri came through on Russell.

A few corners later, Oscar Piastri would overtake Hamilton into Stowe after being put half onto the grass down the Hangar straight. Both McLaren's had the superior tyre grip as the Mercedes struggled in comparison.

Just a few seconds behind, Verstappen and Carlos Sainz would be duelling for fifth and sixth, both the Red Bull and Ferrari packages not looking as fast as the Mercedes and McLaren cars.

With the rain easing and DRS re-activated, it was back to dry running conditions for a couple of laps. As Piastri closed to Norris by a few tenths, rain began falling once again as DRS was once again deactivated. Sergio Perez and Charles Leclerc came in for the Intermediate tyres earlier on and were struggling drastically for grip, their tyres burning up as the pair went an entire lap down.

All of the drivers would come in for their pit stop, with McLaren electing to leave Piastri out on the Medium tyres as Norris came in for his pit stop. Piastri was compromised completely by this decision, coming out in sixth place after running in second position before the pit stops.

Verstappen would report that the Intermediate tyres were degrading a lot in the mixed conditions. The rain was not able to sit on the circuit itself in some places. The Intermediate tyres began degrading hugely after just a short number of laps, with rain only expected for a short while, most drivers wanted to stay out on the circuit until the rain was scheduled to stop.

George Russell would be forced to come into the pits and retire the car due to a technical issue relating to water inside the car, the polesitter retiring from the race after running in fourth place behind Verstappen.

Hamilton would begin hunting Norris down for the lead of the race, taking around seven tenths of a second out of the leading McLaren for a couple of laps, as the track began drying out with around 15 laps remaining.

Hamilton would be called into the pits along with Verstappen, as Lando Norris stayed out on the circuit in the lead. Hamilton would move onto the Soft compound tyre, as Verstappen ran the Hard tyre. Oscar Piastri went onto the Medium tyre, overtaking the Ferrari of Sainz for fourth.

Lewis Hamilton would seize the lead of the race after Norris ran for an extra lap, Norris fitted the Soft tyres as he began chasing after the leading Mercedes. Verstappen would then begin chasing the pair down with just 10 laps remaining, the Red Bull was able to push the Hard tyres to their limit, whereas the leading British duo had to conserve their Soft tyres to the end of the race.

Red Bull began reporting that the Soft tyres were graining on the cars ahead as Norris' tyres began dropping drastically, losing half a second to Verstappen per lap.

On Lap 48, Max Verstappen would fly around the outside of Lando Norris for second place, the Red Bull carrying exceptional speed on the Hard tyres. In the dying laps of the race, Carlos Sainz would fit the Soft tyres in a bid to get the fastest lap point.

Lewis Hamilton would come home to win the British Grand Prix in 2024, his ninth victory at Silverstone in front of the home crowd, and his first race win since Saudi Arabia 2021.

Verstappen would finish in second place, just 1.4 seconds away from the Mercedes of Hamilton, with Lando Norris rounding out the podium places.

F1 British Grand Prix Results

1st Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes

2nd Max Verstappen, Red Bull

3rd Lando Norris, McLaren

4th Oscar Piastri, McLaren

5th Carlos Sainz, Ferrari

6th Nico Hulkenberg, Haas

7th Lance Stroll, Aston Martin

8th Fernando Alonso, Aston Martin

9th Alex Albon, Williams

10th Yuki Tsunoda, RB

11th Logan Sargeant, Williams

12th Kevin Magnussen, Haas

13th Daniel Ricciardo, RB

14th Charles Leclerc, Ferrari

15th Valtteri Bottas, Sauber

16th Esteban Ocon, Alpine

17th Sergio Perez, Red Bull

18th Guanyu Zhou, Sauber

DNF George Russell, Mercedes

DNF Pierre Gasly, Alpine


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