Jump-start: another triumph for Lewis Hamilton as he reigns in Germany after Nico Rosberg cops penalty
Briton extends his lead in battle for Formula One championship after commanding victory in German Grand Prix, with Mercedes teammate and title rival Nico Rosberg finishing only fourth after a shocking start
Lewis Hamilton extended his lead in the Formula One drivers’ championship to 19 points after winning the German Grand Prix with ease on Sunday, with Mercedes teammate and title rival Nico Rosberg only fourth.
Rosberg surrendered his lead from pole to the Briton, who stormed away to claim his sixth win in seven races and strengthen his grip in the title chase.
Second was Daniel Ricciardo, with Max Verstappen, his Red Bull teammate, third.
Reigning world champion Hamilton took full advantage of a poor start by Rosberg – who also received a five second pit-stop penalty for an over-aggressive passing move that forced Verstappen off the track – to deliver a flawless drive.
“What a race,” Hamilton, who started second on the grid, told the crowd from the podium.
“A big thank you to everyone who has come out. To see so many people here is great. What a race, what a fantastic start. It was just about keeping it cool. This is a very proud position to be in and thank you to the team, who did a fantastic job.
“I didn’t make any mistakes so in my heart I’m happy with what I did. [Saturday qualifying] was not perfect, but you learn from those things.”
Ricciardo said: “That is two weeks in a row I’ve been on the podium and it is great to have the race back here in Germany.
“This is the first double podium for [Red Bull] in over a year and it is awesome to close out the first part of the season like this.
“My mum and dad are here and it is great to have their support. I see a few Australian flags, and I appreciate them and the support.
“It was a race of strategy first and on the super softs I was much more comfortable. We couldn’t win but second and third is not too bad.”
Verstappen said: “We had a good start, from there on the pace was pretty good. I was enjoying it. We chose to do two different strategies and double podium is great for the team.”
For Rosberg, who was seeking to repeat his 2014 triumph, it ended up as a day of disappointment on home soil.
“It is a tough one, really difficult,” Rosberg told Sky Sports. “The start went completely wrong, none of it was good. There was a lot of wheelspin, it caught me by surprise.
“Being 19 points behind is not tough, tough is losing the race in the way I did and that will take some time to digest.”
The home fans at Hockenheim did have another German to cheer as four-time champion Sebastian Vettel finished fifth ahead of his Ferrari teammate Kimi Raikkonen and compatriot Nico Hulkenberg, who was seventh on home turf for Force India.
Briton Jenson Button, the 2009 world champion, finished eighth ahead of Finn Valtteri Bottas of Williams and Mexican Sergio Perez of Force India.