Ferrari took advantage of a poor start by the Mercedes AMG drivers at yesterday’s 2015 Formula One Hungarian Grand Prix to jump into the lead, and in the case of star driver Sebastian Vettel stay there right up until the end of the race. At one point Vettel had a 30-second gap between the next best driver, though this eroded with the arrival of the safety car on lap 42 when Force India’s Nico Hulkenberg crashed into a tire wall. He was unhurt in the crash.
Without a gap, it meant Vettel had to stay on the limit right to the very end to secure his second win for Ferrari (the first was the 2015 Malaysian Grand Prix) and his first ever at Budapest’s Hungaroring. Close behind him were Infiniti Red Bull Racing drivers Daniil Kvyat and Daniel Ricciardo, with Kvyat eventually crossing the line ahead of Ricciardo. Ferrari’s other man Kimi Räikkönen wasn’t so lucky. The Finn was lying second for much of the race, but in the final third his chance of a podium evaporated when a problem with his energy recovery system meant he had to retire.
An impressive performance by Toro Rosso’s Max Verstappen saw the Dutch youngster finish fourth, but the big surprise was McLaren’s Fernando Alonso crossing the line fifth—his best finish all season. The Spaniard managed to take advantage of some bad luck suffered by the Mercedes drivers.
As mentioned, Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg both suffered a poor start, seeing them drop from the front row to third and fourth behind the Ferraris. Some blunders saw them drop further back, with Hamilton falling as far back as tenth at one point after he ran wide while attempting to pass Rosberg.
While the safety car period allowed the Mercedes drivers to catch up with the top of the field, Hamilton had to serve a drive through penalty on lap 54 after contact with Ricciardo on lap 49. Further contact with Ricciardo saw Rosberg suffer a puncture, forcing an extra pit stop on lap 64. In the end, Hamilton would cross the line sixth and Rosberg eighth. Splitting the two Silver Arrows was Lotus’ Romain Grosjean.
McLaren’s Jenson Button finished ninth while Sauber’s Marcus Ericsson rounded out the top ten.
There weren’t any other major dramas but it was an unfortunate day for Williams drivers Valtteri Bottas and Felipe Massa. Bottas made a great start running in fourth after the first lap but he was later hit from behind and suffered a puncture as a result, causing him to lose any chance of a podium finish. Massa was handed a five-second penalty for being out of position on the grid and suffered from poor performance throughout the race.
Following the results of the race, Hamilton still leads the 2015 Drivers’ Championship with his new total of 202 points. Rosberg is second with 181 and Vettel is third with 160. In the Constructors’ Championship, Mercedes leads with 383 points followed by Ferrari with 236 and Williams with 151. Teams now enjoy their summer break before having to start preparations for the Belgian Grand Prix on August 23.
Below are the full results for the 2015 Formula One Hungarian Grand Prix:
1) Sebastian Vettel, Ferrari
2) Daniil Kvyat, Infiniti Red Bull Racing
3) Daniel Ricciardo, Infiniti Red Bull Racing
4) Max Verstappen, Toro Rosso
5) Fernando Alonso, McLaren
6) Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG
7) Romain Grosjean, Lotus
8) Nico Rosberg, Mercedes AMG
9) Jenson Button, McLaren
10) Marcus Ericsson, Sauber
11) Felipe Nasr, Sauber
12) Felipe Massa, Williams
13) Valtteri Bottas, Williams
14) Pastor Maldonado, Lotus
15) Roberto Merhi, Marussia
16) Will Stevens, Marussia
Ret) Carlos Sainz, Toro Rosso
Ret) Kimi Räikkönen, Ferrari
Ret) Sergio Perez, Force India
Ret) Nico Hulkenberg, Force India