Hamilton extends lead with Germany win

By on Sunday, July 31, 2016
Mercedes AMG Petronas

Mercedes AMG Petronas

Reigning World Champion Lewis Hamilton extended his advantage in the title race to 19 points as he cruised to victory at the German Grand Prix, his sixth triumph of the season.

Hamilton controlled proceedings from the off as Mercedes team-mate Nico Rosberg dropped to fourth, behind both Red Bull drivers.

Rosberg’s comeback was subsequently dented by a penalty as Daniel Ricciardo and Max Verstappen ensured both Red Bull drivers finished on the podium.

It was Hamilton's 49th career victory and third at the German Grand Prix, adding to his Hockenheim success in 2008 and Nurburgring triumph of 2011.

Hamilton got the jump at the start as Rosberg suffered from wheelspin, while Verstappen went around the outside of Ricciardo into Turn 1.

Hamilton cruised clear as the leading quartet all adopted three-stop strategies, albeit using different compounds at different stages of the race.

Ricciardo dropped to fourth during the second stint on Softs as Verstappen and Rosberg fitted the Super Soft tyres, with the Mercedes driver closing in on his competitor.

Rosberg made a move at the hairpin but was judged to have forced Verstappen wide and was hit with a five-second penalty.

He was forced to serve the sanction at his pit stop and he dropped to fourth, from there unable to make progress.

Ricciardo was able to use the Super Softs during the final stages and he steamed past Verstappen to take second, as the Dutch youngster ensured both Red Bull drivers finished on the rostrum.

Ferrari had a lonely race, with Sebastian Vettel jumping Kimi Räikkönen at the start, but unable to make further progress.

Vettel was over half a minute behind race winner Hamilton, with Raikkonen a few seconds further back in sixth.

Nico Hülkenberg was seventh for Force India, as Jenson Button, Valtteri Bottas and Sergio Pérez rounded out the top 10.

Esteban Gutiérrez was the only driver to start on the Soft tyres and made progress late on to bag 11th, as Fernando Alonso suffered with tyre wear and plummeted to 12th.

Romain Grosjean was 13th, ahead of Toro Rosso pair Carlos Sainz Jr. and Daniil Kvyat.

Kevin Magnussen took 16th, with Pascal Wehrlein surviving contact with Rio Haryanto to secure 17th position, ahead of Marcus Ericsson and Jolyon Palmer.

Palmer’s race was compromised when he locked up on the first lap and had to pit; Haryanto was the final classified finisher in 20th place.

Felipe Nasr retired late on for Sauber as Felipe Massa struggled for pace throughout the race, having been clipped on the opening lap, and dropped down the order before retiring mid-distance.

Light rain fell during the final few laps but did not affect the outcome of the race.

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