Vettel claims Hungarian GP

Source:AFP Published: 2017/7/30 23:48:40

Championship lead over Hamilton extends to 14 points

Sebastian Vettel of Ferrari and Germany celebrates winning with his team during the Hungarian Formula One Grand Prix on Sunday in Budapest, Hungary. Photo: CFP

Sebastian Vettel increased his drivers' world championship lead to 14 points on Sunday when he led Kimi Raikkonen home in a dominant Ferrari one-two at the Hungarian Grand Prix.

In his 50th race for Ferrari, the four-time champion German controlled the contest from pole position in stifling heat to reel off his first win in five races since the Monaco Grand Prix.

His main title rival Lewis Hamilton of Mercedes finished fourth, after handing a podium finish back to his teammate Valtteri Bottas on the final lap following a late switch to enable the Briton to attack the two Ferraris.

Dutchman Max Verstappen finished fifth for Red Bull after surviving an opening-lap collision with his teammate Daniel Ricciardo that saw the angry Australian forced into an early retirement, forcing the deployment of the Safety Car.

Two-time champion Spaniard Fernando Alonso came home sixth and recorded the fastest lap of the race for ­McLaren-Honda after a stirring and often remarkable drive.

Vettel, who started the day just a point ahead of Hamilton, increased his lead by another 13 after 11 of this year's 20 races as the circus takes a now-­traditional three-week ­European summer holiday before the Belgian Grand Prix.

It was Ferrari's first one-two in Hungary since 2004, when seven-time champion German Michael Schumacher triumphed ahead of Brazilian Rubens Barrichello, the last season in which the race winner in Hungary went on to win the drivers' title.

"I'm over the moon," said Vettel. "It was really difficult. I had my hands full from three, four laps after the safety car. The steering started to go sideways.

"I stayed off the kerbs, tried to save the car. I didn't do any favors to Kimi, who could go faster and I really had to stay focused the whole race.

"I was hoping for a couple of laps to breathe, but they didn't come. I don't know what happened. We'll have a look - but it doesn't matter now because we won the race!"

Raikkonen, cheered by a huge following of Finns in a sell-out crowd at the sweltering Hungaroring, said, "­Unfortunately, I couldn't give them the win. I had a good start, but didn't want to force the issue."

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