Although its conductive quality is certified by its statistics, from time to time English Lewis Hamilton shows with spectacular races why he is the reference rider of the F1. And that happened in the 2021 edition of Grand Prix of Portugal in which the Mercedes driver won thanks to two masterful maneuvers about its main rivals.
The Sevenfold and current leader of the tournament started from the second position after being defeated in the classification by his teammate, the Finn Valtteri Bottas. The Nordic kept the leading role in the game thanks to a good start that allowed him to stay at the head of the squad, although then the usual happened to him ...
The race had a hiatus at the end of the first lap due to the Finn's confusion Kimi Räikkönen, who broke his Alfa Romeo after crashing into his Italian partner Antonio Giovinazzi. In the relaunch on the seventh lap, the figure of the Dutchman was magnified Max Verstappen (Red Bull), who surprised Hamilton, snatched second place and immediately went in search of the leader.
So far it seemed that it was not going to be Hamilton Sunday. But he himself took it upon himself to prove otherwise. On the eleventh turn entered the straight like lightning and regained second place against a Verstappen who could do little, beyond his unsuccessful attempt at the second corner.
The Englishman printed a devilish rhythm that allowed him to get closer to Bottas, whom he beat on the twentieth lap a tight pass going on the outside at the first corner.
From there, Hamilton made a quiet race and even let the Mexican Sergio Pérez (Red Bull) was the leader of the test when it was his turn to go into the pits to change tires. The Aztec punctuated until the champion, with a faster car, passed it in the 51st lap of the 66 agreed.
Bottas ran like Bottas again. After his stoppage in the pits he started in front of Verstappen, but could not maintain the second position due to the speed of the Dutchman, who took advantage of the better grip of his tires to pass his opponent cleanly.
Hamilton thus achieved his 97th win in F.1 and proved, once again, that statistics only serve to increase the fame he achieves on the track.
THE PODIUM IN PHRASES
LEWIS HAMILTON: “It was a very tough race physically and mentally. I didn't make a good start and also lost at the restart, but in the end we achieved a great result. Today was not entirely perfect and we have to prepare now for Spain ”.
MAX STEPS: “At first I tried to put pressure on Valtteri (Bottas), but in the end I think today we lacked a bit of rhythm. On the hard tires we were a little slower; on some laps we were able to match Lewis and on others it just wasn't possible. At least we got good points ”.
VALTTERI BOTTAS: “Obviously it's not what I was looking for because when you start from pole, you want to win. At the beginning I couldn't keep up and towards the end we had a problem with the exhaust temperature sensor that cost me speed on the straight ”.
RESULTS GRAND PRIZE OF PORTUGAL 2021
|pos.||PILOT||CAR||VTAS||TIME / dIF||PTS|
|2||33||RED BULL RACING HONDA||66||+29.148s||18|
|4||11||RED BULL RACING HONDA||66||+39.735s||12|
|12||99||ALFA ROMEO RACING FERRARI||65||+1 round||0|
|13||5||ASTON MARTIN MERCEDES||65||+1 round||0|
|14||18||ASTON MARTIN MERCEDES||65||+1 round||0|
|15||22||ALPHATAURI HONDA||65||+1 round||0|
|16||63||WILLIAMS MERCEDES||65||+1 round||0|
|17||47||HAAS FERRARI||64||+2 laps.||0|
|18||6||WILLIAMS MERCEDES||64||+2 laps.||0|
|19||9||HAAS FERRARI||64||+2 laps.||0|
|NC||7||ALFA ROMEO RACING FERRARI||1||DNF||0|
AVERAGE: 194,761 km / h. LAP RECORD: Valtteri Bottas, on 65th, in 1: 19.865 at 209,739 km / h. PILOT CHAMPIONSHIP: 1) Hamilton, 69 points; 2) Verstappen, 61; 3) Norris, 37; 4) Bottas, 32; 5) Leclerc, 28; 6) Pérez, 22; 7) Ricciardo, 16; 8) Sainz, 14; 9) Ocon, 8; 10) Gasly, 7; 11) Stroll and Alonso, 5; 13) Tsunoda, 2. BUILDERS CUP: 1) Mercedes, 101 points; 2) Red Bull-Honda, 83; 3) McLaren-Mercedes, 53; 4) Ferrari, 42; 5) Alpine-Renault, 13; 6) AlphaTauri-Honda, 9; 7) Aston Martin-Mercedes, 5. NEXT DATE: 9/5, Grand Prix of Spain.