Even though Hamilton secured pole position in Saturday’s qualifying, yesterdays race started well for Sebastian Vettel where he managed to overtake Hamilton and take the lead of the race. He did so for only 5 laps before Hamilton caught up and overtook him. Hamilton then went on to win the race which led to Mercedes winning this year’s constructors title with 3 races left to go.
At the end of the line, Max Verstappen finished in 3rd place only to not be allowed up on the podium as stewards found that Max Verstappen’s last-lap pass illegal thus giving him a penalty which cost him his podium finish. The stewards deemed that a 5-second penalty was suitable for Verstappen as he left the track whilst overtaking Raikkonen. Both Hamilton and Vettel will battle it out in Mexico for the driver’s title next weekend.
Valtteri Bottas came in fifth followed by Esteban Ocon in the Force India and Sergio Perez and Carlos Sainz. The pit strategy was really on point for Mercedes which didn’t seem apparent for Hamilton when he went into the pit only to be caught up by Vettel again. He wasn’t really exactly thankful but only to know that later, Vettel had to pit in again on the 39th lap whilst the Mercedes kept on going.
Hamilton had a scare on the 20th lap as he emerged from what transpired to be his sole pit stop, and Vettel, who had stopped three laps earlier, had wiped out a 4.4s deficit and was almost right on him. Hamilton wasn’t amused and rebuked his team, but at the same time he quickly pulled away again, and when Vettel had to stop again on the 39th lap, it was also soon clear that Mercedes would not need to do the same.
Though Hamilton still needs nine points to secure the drivers’ title – just fifth place in Mexico next weekend will be enough – Mercedes cemented the constructors’ championship, and now have 575 points to Ferrari’s 428, Red Bull’s 315 and Force India’s 159.
Here are the full standings from yesterday’s race.
|4||33||RED BULL RACING TAG HEUER||56||+16.768s||12|
|6||31||FORCE INDIA MERCEDES||56||+90.980s||8|
|8||11||FORCE INDIA MERCEDES||55||+1 lap||4|
|9||19||WILLIAMS MERCEDES||55||+1 lap||2|
|10||26||TORO ROSSO||55||+1 lap||1|
|11||18||WILLIAMS MERCEDES||55||+1 lap||0|
|12||2||MCLAREN HONDA||55||+1 lap||0|
|13||39||TORO ROSSO||55||+1 lap||0|
|14||8||HAAS FERRARI||55||+1 lap||0|
|15||9||SAUBER FERRARI||55||+1 lap||0|
|16||20||HAAS FERRARI||55||+1 lap||0|
|NC||3||RED BULL RACING TAG HEUER||14||DNF||0|