Lewis Hamilton came up with another stunning performance as he beat Max Verstappen in a thrilling race in Barcelona to win the Spanish Grand Prix on Sunday. Hamilton, who had sealed his 100th pole on Saturday, has won the race in Barcelona 5 times on the bounce to equal Michael Schumacher’s record at the Spanish GP.
Lewis Hamilton has won 3 out of the last 4 races in the ongoing Formula One season. He began the Spanish GP with an 8-point lead over Max Verstappen but has extended it to 14 over the Red Bull driver who sealed an extra point for the fastest lap on Sunday. Hamilton’s Mercedes teammates Valtteri Bottas finished on the podium.
It was not an easy ride for Lewis Hamilton as Verstappen’s Red Bull edged the pole-sitting Mercedes driver in the first curve to get an early lead. But Mercedes’ use of two pit stops to give Hamilton fresher tires down the final stretch paid off and allowed him to overtake Verstappen with six laps to go.
“Red Bull got a great start. I was hunting …. It was a long way to come back from, 20-odd seconds back. But it was a good gamble,” Hamilton said of his win.
Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc finished fourth, followed by Sergio Pérez in the other Red Bull. Daniel Ricciardo was sixth for McLaren. Carlos Sainz in the other Ferrari was seventh, followed by McLaren’s Lando Norris, Esteban Ocon in an Alpine and Pierre Gasly for Alpha Tauri rounding out the top ten.
How the two pit stop strategy worked in favour of Hamilton
Even though Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff said before the race that he expected to make one pit stop, seeing Verstappen holding his lead must have changed his mind. Hamilton came in for a second time on lap 43 for a new set of tires.
When Hamilton got back on the track he asked his team “how far have I got to catch up?”
He was told: “Twenty-two seconds We’ve done it before.”
Verstappen saw Hamilton eating into this lead and told his team “I don’t see how we are going to make it to the end.”
He was right. Verstappen was unable to put up a fight when Hamilton caught and overtook him on the outside of a turn. (With AP inputs)