What a fantastic action today's 70th Grand Prix has produced at Silverstone! Red Bull's Max Verstappen stopped the utterly dominant Mercedes outfit with an excellent drive while Ferrari's Charles Leclerc stormed through the field to take fourth place with his underperforming SF1000.
When Formula One stayed for another weekend at Silverstone for the 70th Anniversary Grand Prix, many feared that the fifth round of the curtailed 2020 championship could turn into another uneventful Mercedes-dominated race. However, Pirelli finally provided the field with a thrilling tyre range which led to a fantastic celebratory Grand Prix.
Following four Mercedes victories at the start of the 2020 campaign, Max Verstappen rose to the top, using the mighty tyre management of his Red Bull RB16. Ferrari's young star Charles Leclerc shocked everyone with a brilliant performance once again to deliver a fourth-place finish after crossing the finish line after the opening lap down in 10th. For the very first time this year, the Monegasque posted fantastic race lap times that were comparable to the dominant Mercedes team.
Sebastian Vettel, 12th "Today I tried my best. Unfortunately I had a spin in Turn 1 and I’m not sure what happened there. I thought I got hit, but actually it was a kerb, and I suddenly lost the car. However, I also feel we could have done a better job on the strategy. After my first stop I was in traffic and for this reason we had to bring forward the second stop. In the end I had to drive on the medium tyres for 20 laps, which I feel was not the best choice we could have made today. Of course the race was difficult overall and it’s a pity we couldn’t get back to where we wanted to be."Charles Leclerc, 4th
“Today feels like a victory, which is not something we like to say when we finish fourth. If you would have told me this morning that I could finish the race in my starting position in 8th, I would have signed immediately.
"In terms of strategy, the team had some concerns about the one-stop approach, looking at what happened to some of the tyres last week. But sometimes, as a driver, you feel something in the car that you can’t see in the data. So I pushed to go for one stop because I believed I could make it work. I am glad that we went for it and that it worked out well. Last year, I knew that my weakest point was tyre management. I worked very hard to improve there, and to see the result on track is a huge satisfaction for me. I am interested in analysing the data from today and understanding where we found our pace. I was quite impressed and it was a positive surprise. In tough times like these, we have to take any opportunity we can get, and we did that today, so I am very happy with the result.”
AlphaTauriPierre Gasly, 11th
“I had a good start and also felt quite comfortable with the tyres on the first stint, so I was a bit surprised when I was called in for the first pit stop earlier than we had planned before the race. I think we tried to cover Albon but actually, that wasn’t really our race. Once back on track, we found ourselves in traffic and I had to push more than I would have liked on the tyres to make up a few positions. This caused massive blistering after a few laps, so from there on the race was pretty much a nightmare. I’m quite disappointed because I think there was something more to achieve today. We need to review what we could have done better strategy-wise and get back into the points in Barcelona.”Daniil Kvyat, 10th
“I’m very satisfied today, I felt like it was a mega race. As a team we did a great job, we were able to squeeze everything out of the car and I think today’s result was the maximum on the table. We took every opportunity that came our way and, unlike last week, we were able to capitalize on them. I generally feel quite strong on Sundays, but we definitely need to put it together on Saturdays, as starting the race from a better position would make things much easier to regularly fight for points. However, starting from P16 and finishing tenth to score one point makes us happy today.”
Racing PointNico Hulkenberg, 7th
“I’m happy to have scored points for the team. P7 is a good result, especially when you haven’t raced for nine months. It wasn’t an easy race, and it was tough physically, but first of all, it was important that I made a good start and got through the first lap because once the race settled down, I could use my experience of managing tyres and driving these types of Formula 1 cars. I was quite relieved after I got through the first few corners! In the second stint, it was tricky to manage the tyres. Unfortunately, we had to pit again and move onto a three-stop strategy because there were some vibrations, and we needed to make sure I could make it to the finish.”Lance Stroll, 6th
“I had a good start to the race and made up some places off the line, which put both of our cars into a great position early in the race. It was fun to have a battle with Nico and I managed to get him around the outside of Turn 6, but I locked up a little bit, and he was able to get by again. We then settled into P4 and P5, but it was clear that Leclerc was able to make a one-stop strategy work and the Red Bulls were very quick today. We’ve banked some good points with a solid strategy. We always want more, though, so we’ll go away and look into all the different strategies used today and learn from it. Nico did another good job, and it’s a strong result for the team.”
“That was definitely a very good Sunday for us. We made a solid start, managed the tyres well, received good communication from the team and it was a great pit-stop from the mechanics. It looked to be a very tough race in terms of tyres, especially on an aggressive strategy, but we managed to get that sorted and, in the end, we had a lot of pace. We just kept the tyres alive as best we could and managed to keep cars behind, so we’re very happy with the result. I don’t think we could have done much more from fourteenth on the grid. Our target is to qualify better – we have the pace for that – and then we can really fight for more points.”Daniel Ricciardo, 14th
“Today was just one of those days where things got progressively worse and worse. It was going okay at the beginning, maintaining sixth and hanging on pace-wise to the cars ahead. We pitted for another medium and I was struggling to hold onto them. We had to pit for the hard and then it got messy at Turn 3 and I lost the rear defending from Carlos [Sainz] and had the spin. The race was done then. We have to accept it, take it on the chin and go again in Barcelona. It’s a frustrating one today, but there are lots of positives from the two weeks at Silverstone and we can draw on that looking forward.”
McLarenCarlos Sainz, 13th
“A disappointing day for all of us. We managed to get a good start and after a very strong and long first stint we were in a good spot. Unfortunately, it looks like we had a gun failure in the pit-stop, which undid all the work done before the stop. It looks like we could’ve been on for some points today with the tyre strategy we had and with how we managed the race, but again I missed out on a good result for reasons beyond my control. We were unfortunate, but at the same time we need to keep digging and keep pushing because today is definitely another disappointing day for me personally, and for everyone in the team. We go again next weekend at my home race, so I hope we can recover there.”Lando Norris, 9th
“A tough race! I went forward one position, which I guess is the main thing, but it was tough. We really struggled with tyres, which we knew were going to be an issue coming into the race, but we struggled a lot more than we were expecting – or I was expecting – and that made it a lot more difficult for me. All of the cars ahead, as you could see from qualifying, were quicker than us. I think probably a lot of people were in the same boat as us, it was just very tricky to control.”
HaasRomain Grosjean, 16th
“The start, for me, was an issue – I don’t know what I did wrong, we need to look at everything. After that I felt I had some good pace, but obviously being in traffic I was losing so much front air. Going into the high-speed stuff, I couldn’t pass the guys. I asked to go on a one-stop strategy, which was ‘Plan B’, but we were just too short of making it. But I still tried to go long on the hard tyres, I was working to look after them. I was doing as much as I could. We were expecting front wear, but we got rear blisters. I guess that was the same story for everyone. It was windy out there, it was inconsistent because of the gusts, but I can push the car, I can drive it – our lap times were good. We need to work now on cooling down the rear tyres when they get too hot. Our results don’t show much, but for us the pace wasn’t bad. I know where we can improve.”Kevin Magnussen, DNF
“The car just hasn’t performed this weekend as we know it can. We know it can perform, especially on a Sunday in race conditions. It just hasn’t happened this weekend. We had the crash last Sunday, and I think the parts that we put on as replacements, the floor and so on – they’re old parts, I can’t really say what else it could be. In my mind that has to be it as the car can be a lot better than this. It simply hasn’t worked this weekend and that’s unfortunate. I had a great start again, so I’ll take that away as a positive and try and continue to keep doing that. We know in normal circumstances the car is more competitive in the race than it is in qualifying. We need to keep getting those good starts and fight in those positions. Our job is to keep fighting.”
MercedesLewis Hamilton, 2nd
"It was a really challenging race out there today. Fair play to Max on the win, Red Bull didn't seem to have the same tyre issues we encountered. I'm just grateful that we managed to bring it home in P2 and score some good points. We didn't expect to struggle with the blistering to the extent we experienced it. The first stint was difficult, in the second stint I was managing the tyres like you cannot believe. I was doing everything I could to nurse the tyres, but it made no difference to the blistering. I was pushing so hard in those final laps to pass Charles and Valtteri that it felt like I was racing with half a tyre at the end. I don't know if anyone else struggled with the blistering the same way we did, so we'll have to see what happened today, but I know this team will get on top of it."Valtteri Bottas, 3rd
"That was a frustrating race today. It's never great to start from pole and finish P3. I think we were pretty much on the backfoot from the moment I lost track position to Max. We potentially could have gone longer in the second stint, the way Lewis did, to be able to push more towards the end of the race on fresher tyres. I tried to keep up with Max, but as soon as I started to push in the final stint the tyres just fell apart. We really struggled with the blistering today; as soon as you have blisters, you lose the grip and the performance, and it becomes very tough. It seems like the other teams, particularly Red Bull, didn't have the same problem, so we'll have to look into that and try and get to the bottom of it. There's a lot to learn for us today, but as always we'll move on and try to come back stronger.", Mercedes F1 W11 EQ Performance, battles with Charles Leclerc, Ferrari SF1000
Alfa RomeoKimi Raikkonen, 15th
“I am not happy to be out of the points, of course, even though our pace was not too bad. We did what we could but from P20 we could only make it up to 15th, so we are still missing something, especially on Saturday, to be in the fight for the top ten. We thought a one-stop was possible since yesterday so we tried: the tyres actually lasted well, I still had pretty good grip but had an awful lot of vibration and I had to slow down to avoid something breaking. In the end we leave with nothing, so we will need to come up with a better performance if we want to be in the fight for points.”Antonio Giovinazzi, 17th
“It wasn’t the easiest of days: we tried our best, we chose to split the strategies to give ourselves a few more chances but in the end it was not enough to get points. Our race pace was once again better than what we showed on Saturday, so we can hope to make a step forward if we improve our performance in qualifying. We need to keep positive and work hard, as a team, to improve: it’s not realistic to expect many things changing in a couple of days, but at least we are going to a new venue and we can hope it suits us a bit better than Silverstone.”
"It was a very difficult race. We made a really poor getaway and lost a couple of positions. It was difficult for everybody, but that’s how it is in these tricky races sometimes. We have a lot to understand and review, it just wasn’t our day. It’s been two very different weekends at Silverstone. We need to understand why and what’s changed between these two weekends and how that will help us moving forward. Nevertheless, it has been a good two weeks. Our qualifying pace is strong, so we just need to keep working on our Sunday pace."
Nicholas Latifi, 19th
"It was a race that you had to adapt on the fly based on the situation and the strategy. The car was feeling great, even better than last weekend and it is the most confidence I have had behind the wheel in a race so far. I think the finishing position is not where we deserve to be, we came into some tyre issues with our rear left, which forced us into a third stop. I think we were just unlucky with the track position and being stuck behind some cars. I’m a bit disappointed, but the positive is that the pace is there."
Red BullMax Verstappen, 1st
“It’s a great day and I’m very happy with the result as we did everything really well as a Team. The race showed we had the right strategy after our decision to qualify on the hard tyre and I’m pleased it paid off. I think the length and pace of our first stint was the key to being competitive as the mediums don’t last that long, so starting on the hard was definitely the right call. We can see the car works well on softer compounds, especially in the race, and it looks after its tyres. When you are able to overtake and pull away from a Mercedes it is really satisfying. Of course, I hope this will happen a lot more throughout the season and we’ll keep pushing them hard even though they have been the dominant team up until now. We’ll keep pushing, we have a really good Team spirit and I love that we never give up and do take risks. We will enjoy today because everyone deserves it after all the hard work, before focusing our attention on next week’s race in Barcelona.”Alex Albon, 5th
“I am happy with today’s race and the car was unbelievable. At the beginning of the race it was tricky to overtake with the DRS train but once we had clear air we had a really good chance to get through the field. I was a bit surprised by the balance and race pace today, it was so good, so we need to go away and understand why. It shows we have a lot of potential in the car, it’s just hard to unlock it sometimes, but we are good in these conditions so now we know to find out why. It was a good finish to get fifth and hopefully we can now bring some more performance to next week’s race.”