Hamilton cops record-equalling 91st win, topping Eifel GP
Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton has matched the career win record of Michael Schumacher with his 91st F1 victory at the Eifel GP, triumphing over the Red Bull of Max Verstappen at the Nurburgring, as Daniel Ricciardo secured his first podium for the Renault squad.
Hamilton had been outmuscled by his polesitting team mate Valtteri Bottas at the start of the race, but passed the Finn on Lap 13 of 60 after Bottas locked up at Turn One – before a loss of power forced Bottas into retirement six laps later, Mercedes’s first DNF of 2020.
From there, Hamilton then had a relatively comfortable run to his record-equalling win #91, overcoming a Safety Car restart – coming after McLaren’s Lando Norris had retired on Lap 44 – to win from Verstappen by 4s. Hamilton’s victory poignantly came in front of Schumacher’s son Mick, who was due to drive in Friday practice for Alfa Romeo this weekend, and on Schumacher’s home turf to boot.
If there was joy for Hamilton, though, that was matched in the Renault camp, with Ricciardo taking the team’s first podium since returning to the sport in 2016, and his first since his win for Red Bull at Monaco in 2018.
Ricciardo headed off the Racing Point of Sergio Perez, who came home P4, ahead of the sole remaining McLaren of Carlos Sainz – while a stealthily brilliant race from AlphaTauri’s Pierre Gasly saw him take P6 after a late pass on Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc.
The Monegasque just managed to hold off the second Racing Point of super sub Nico Hulkenberg, who did a fine cameo job in place of Lance Stroll to jump from P20 to P8.
The top 10 was rounded out by the Haas of Romain Grosjean in P9, taking his first points of the season, while Alfa Romeo’s Antonio Giovinazzi claimed the final points paying position, just holding off the Ferrari of Sebastian Vettel.
Meanwhile, it was a race of attrition at the Nurburgring, with Bottas joined in retirement by the Red Bull of Alex Albon, the Renault of Esteban Ocon, the McLaren of Norris and the Williams of George Russell, who was taken out after colliding with Kimi Raikkonen at Turn One, on Raikkonen’s own record-breaking 323rd start.
But in terms of records, it was all eyes on Hamilton, who becomes the joint-most successful F1 driver of all time – and seemingly took another important step towards his own record-equalling seventh title. (F1)