SILVERSTONE, England: Ferrari’s Carlos Sainz claimed his first Formula 1 victory on Sunday (July 3) in a thrilling British Grand Prix interrupted by a first-lap crash and with the added chaos of a track invasion by Some protestors.
Red Bull’s Sergio Perez of Mexico was second, 3.779 seconds behind the Spaniard, with seven-time world champion Lewis Hamilton third for Mercedes in his home race and setting the fastest lap for a bonus point.
” Yes ! We did it ! Let’s go! exclaimed a delighted Sainz on the radio after a victory that had seemed unlikely at one point despite lining up for the first time on pole position, in his 150th race start.
“I don’t know what to say, it’s amazing.
“First race win, 150 races later, with Ferrari at Silverstone. Can’t ask for more. It’s a very special day, a day I’ll never forget, a very special weekend overall. “
The final nine laps were frenetic, full of overtaking as the safety car entered and Perez, Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc and Hamilton fought for second place.
At one point Hamilton, an eight-time British GP winner, passed his two rivals in one fell swoop, then moved from second to fourth and third to third.
Championship leader Max Verstappen finished seventh for Red Bull with a damaged car, his lead over Perez reduced from 46 to 34 points after 10 of 22 races.
Leclerc, who had led with 12 laps to go, finished an unfortunate fourth after a strategic call cost him the win.
The Monegasque stayed out during a late safety car deployment and then had to defend against rivals on fresher tyres.
Spanish double world champion Fernando Alonso finished fifth for Alpine with McLaren’s Lando Norris sixth.
German Mick Schumacher, son of Ferrari great and seven-time world champion Michael, scored his first F1 points with an eighth for Haas which also saw Kevin Magnussen finish 10th.
Four-time world champion Sebastian Vettel moved from 18th to 9th place for Aston Martin on his 35th birthday in a race full of action and suspense but with just 14 finishes.
The race was red flagged and halted for an hour after Chinese driver Guanyu Zhou’s Alfa Romeo got stuck on its side between the tire wall and the catch fence on the first lap. He was then given the medical green light.
The car skidded backwards at high speed along the track before being catapulted over the barrier following a collision with several cars.
Williams’ Alex Albon and Mercedes’ George Russell, who had previously finished all races in the top five, were also caught up in the first lap chaos and played no further role in the afternoon.
Albon was then airlifted to hospital for checks.
As red flags were still waved and cars slowed and returned to the pits, a group of protesters ran onto the track to be booed by the crowd before being chased away.