Hamilton extends his advantage with victory in Hungary

Race winner Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 celebrates on the podium after the Hungarian Grand Prix
© XPB 

Lewis Hamilton sailed to victory in the 2018 Hungarian Grand Prix ahead of Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel and Kimi Raikkonen.

The Mercedes driver's 67th Grand Prix victory and his sixth in Budapest means that he extends his lead in the drivers championship to 24 points over Vettel heading into Formula 1's month-long summer shutdown.

Daniel Ricciardo recovered to fourth place from 12th on the grid, but his team mate Max Verstappen was one of the early retirements in the race after suffering a loss of power on lap 6.

Valtteri Bottas had fought a valiant battle to hold on to second place for much of the race, but he finally succumbed to the fresher tyres of the two Ferraris in the closing laps and ended up finishing fifth behind Ricciardo.

Hungarian Grand Prix - Race results

Pos Driver Team Gap Stops
1 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 70 laps - 1:37:16.427s 1
2 Sebastian Vettel Ferrari + 17.123s 1
3 Kimi Räikkönen Ferrari + 20.101s 2
4 Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull + 46.419s 1
5 Valtteri Bottas Mercedes + 60.000s 1
6 Pierre Gasly Toro Rosso + 73.273s 1
7 Kevin Magnussen Haas + 1 lap 1
8 Fernando Alonso McLaren + 1 lap 1
9 Carlos Sainz Renault + 1 lap 1
10 Romain Grosjean Haas + 1 lap 1
11 Brendon Hartley Toro Rosso + 1 lap 1
12 Nico Hülkenberg Renault + 1 lap 2
13 Esteban Ocon Force India + 1 lap 1
14 Sergio Pérez Force India + 1 lap 1
15 Marcus Ericsson Sauber + 2 laps 1
16 Sergey Sirotkin Williams + 2 laps 1
17 Lance Stroll Williams + 2 laps 1
18 Stoffel Vandoorne McLaren DNF 1
19 Max Verstappen Red Bull DNF 0
20 Charles Leclerc Sauber DNF 0

Compared to 24 hours earlier, the Hungaroring was transformed on Sunday afternoon, bathed in searingly hot and sunny conditions as the cars lined up on the grid for the start of the final race before the summer break.

Gifted a free choice of starting compounds by virtue of the wet qualifying, most of the top ten had opted for the ultrasofts. The exceptions were Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel in fourth and Renault's Carlos Sainz just behind him in fifth, both of whom had selected soft tyres to begin the race on.

Mercedes pair Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas had control of the front row when the lights went out, and they held their advantage into the first corner despite a strong start by Kimi Raikkonen from third place. The Ferrari then ran wide in his attempt to challenge, and he ended up dropping a place to Vettel.

Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W09 leads at the start of the Hungarian Grand Prix

Max Verstappen gained two spots through the first corners to take fifth ahead of Toro Rosso's Pierre Gasly and Kevin Magnussen in the Haas. Verstappen had made light contact with Sainz in the opening corners, and as a result of losing momentum the Renault had been bundled down to eighth ahead of Brendon Hartley and Nico Hulkenberg.

Starting on softs from 12th place, Daniel Ricciardo struggled at the start and ended up being hit by Sauber's Marcus Ericsson. It cost him several positions, which he quickly set about recovering. Ericsson's team mate Charles Leclerc was also in the wars and found himself caught in a Force India sandwich. Moments later he pulled over on the pit straight on lap 3 to retire, telling the team: "I have something bent."

Moments later, Verstappen became the second driver to exit the proceedings when the Red Bull abruptly lost power on lap 6 with an MGU-K issue. It triggered a Virtual Safety Car while the lifeless RB14 was recovered from the grass verge. Verstappen's radio communications on the matter were understandably studded with a myriad of bleeps as he vented his frustration with no holds barred.

When racing resumed, Hamilton had a near-four second lead over Bottas and Vettel, followed by Raikkonen, Gasly, Magnussen, Sainz, Hartley, Hulkenberg and Romain Grosjean.

Birthday boy Fernando Alonso was aggrieved by Grosjean seemingly jumping the end of the VSC to pass him for tenth, although the race stewards didn't appear interested in the matter. The Spaniard's humour wasn't improved when he was them promptly put to the sword by Ricciardo. The Australian went on to swiftly take care of Grosjean, Hulkenberg and Hartley to put him up to eighth place on lap 15.

Red Bull's Max Verstappen retires from the Hungarian Grand Prix

Raikkonen was the first of the leaders to pit at the end of the lap, but it was a sluggish service as the team needed to clean out some rubber from his brake intake. The delay meant Bottas was easily able to respond next time around and get back out on track still well ahead of his fellow Finn, both men having switched to the soft tyres.

All eyes now were on what Hamilton would do, with Vettel set to run much longer on his first stint. He held on until the end of lap 25 - ten laps longer than Bottas - before making his move to pit lane for the slickest of stops and a swap to softs. It handed the lead to the yet-to-pit Vettel, with Hamilton slotting back in to second place ahead of Bottas and Raikkonen.

Having quickly taken care of Sainz, Ricciardo then eventually overcome Kevin Magnussen's robust defence by going around the outside of the Haas in turn 2. On lap 27 he lined up Gasly for a late braking move into turn 1, which succeeded in putting him into the top five for the first time today. While Ricciardo continued onwards on the soft tyres, both Gasly and Magnussen were soon in for service and new tyres after exhausting their ultras.

Vettel had stabilised a 12 second lead over Hamilton, but lapped traffic was preventing him from pulling out the sort of advantage he needed to pit and retain the lead. He still seemed on target for coming out head of Bottas and Raikkonen in second, but even that gap was starting to shrink. His hand was finally forced on lap 40, but a hold-up with the wheel gun on the left front cost him critical seconds. When he came back out it was in third place as Bottas streaked past the exit to pit lane ahead of him.

However, all was far from lost: Vettel was now on a fresh set of ultras and running within DRS range of Bottas. Raikkonen was also on fresh tyres having made a surprise second stop which had dropped him to fifth behind the still-to-pit Ricciardo. The Australian finally came in on lap 45, putting him back behind the Ferrari but still well ahead of Gasly and Magnussen.

McLaren pair Fernando Alonso and Stoffel Vandoorne had gained from long first stints to move into the top ten ahead of Carlos Sainz. That news annoyed Grosjean in 11th, who was so busy complaining about the situation to the Haas pit wall that he briefly ran off at turn 12. However the situation quickly turned around when a gearbox issue for Vandoorne forced the MCL33 to pull over and park at the end of the main straight on lap 52, promoting Grosjean to tenth place after all.

Hungarian Grand Prix: Sebastian Vettel (GER) Ferrari SF71H.

Vandoorne's exit triggered the second VSC of the afternoon, and Mercedes briefly teased their rivals with a feint toward pitting their cars. In the end the mechanics sauntered back into the garage, and Ferrari didn't fall for the deception. Ultimately only Hulkenberg took the opportunity to come in for fresh ultras, with little to lose in 14th place. He soon proved the point by passing Sergio Perez with a dab of DRS in turn 1 but thereafter made little impact on Esteban Ocon.

When the VSC ended, Vettel was close on the tail of Bottas but the Finn was making his car very wide indeed, despite much older tyres which were starting to struggle for grip. The duel allowed Raikkonen to rapidly close up to them, and the pressure on Bottas continued to build with a dozen laps still to run.

Vettel finally struck on lap 65, pulling alongside the Mercedes through lap 1. He then chopped in front of Bottas but hasn't left enough room and ended up stomping on the W09's front wing. He was lucky to escape without sustaining a puncture, and the aftermath allowed Raikkonen to opportunistically pick up an easy third place.

There was no time left for Vettel and Raikkonen to do anything about the huge lead Hamilton had pulled out. Bottas meanwhile was now the walking wounded and appeared easy prey for Ricciardo to pick off. But when the move finally came it ended in contact, Bottas locking up and understeering into the side of the Red Bull and nerfing it off track at turn 1. He was subsequently given a ten second penalty for causing the collision which didn't change the race result, as well as two penalty points added to his superlicence

Despite damage to the RB14, Ricciardo was able to regroup and make a successful bid for fourth place on the final lap, to the delight of the grandstands full of supporters of Ricciardo's team mate. An impressive Pierre Gasly held on to sixth ahead of Magnussen, Alonso, Sainz and Grosjean.

Finishing outside the points were Harley. Hulkenberg, Ocon, Perez, Ericsccon and the two Williams of Sergey Sirotkin and Lance Stroll.

The Hungarian Grand Prix podium

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