MERCEDES FIGHTS BACK IN THE TITLE RACE
The 2021 British Grand Prix took place with its full capacity after seeing two races with no attendance last year due to the COVID 19 pandemic. It was a sold-out event which saw an attendance of over 160,000. This year’s weekend was also looking different from a racing perspective as formula one changed its qualifying format for this race to make the racing weekend more interesting which saw a Friday qualifying for a sprint race on Saturday which would set the gird for the main race on Sunday.
It looked like an interesting weekend as Redbull were coming from a high of their win at Austria where Max dominated both the weekends for the team extending his and Redbull’s lead over Mercedes and Lewis Hamilton, but this weekend Mercedes were looking to fight back. It looked like Mercedes were quite strong as this has been their very strong track where Lewis has taken his seven wins and was planning to take his eighth.
On Friday Mercedes took pole with Lewis who put an amazing qualifying lap for the sprint race on Saturday followed by Max and teammate Bottas who made the front row of the gird. George Russel who also put his car in Q3 once again proved why he is deserving of that Mercedes seat for next year. In the sprint race Max got an amazing start and took 1st position from Lewis and continued to for the rest of the 17-lap race making him the winner of the first sprint race in f1. It wasn’t all good at Redbull as Sergio Perez had to start from the pitlane for taking damage to the car due to a spin in the opening laps. George Russel’s hard work too came to nothing after he was relegated to 12th place for coming in contact Carlos Sainz’s Ferrari. Fernando Alonso had also placed his Alpine at 7th place after an amazing sprint race.
Finally, Sunday came which was certainly going to be a spicy battle between Max and Lewis for the 25 points. The race started and both of them went fighting right from the start for the lead until they came to Cops which is the fastest corner on the circuit and Lewis while fighting for the lead came in contact with Max which took out one of his tires and skid him off the track and into the barriers. His car was destroyed, and he sustained a force of 51Gs. He came out unharmed, but the race was red flagged immediately with Charles in the lead and Lewis behind him. Mercedes and Redbull were furious with each other as the blame game started on who was at fault. After the decision was taken Lewis was handed a 10 second stop and go penalty which he had to serve during his pitstop. Redbull weren’t happy with it as they wanted a harsher punishment, but the race went on. Lewis drove a sensational race making up time which he lost during the penalty to overtake Charles in the final laps of the race and claim his 8th British Grand Prix win. The podium was completed with Lewis, Charles and Bottas. Sergio was able to steal the fastest lap point from Lewis after he decided to pit for soft tires. The aftermath of the race was seen later as Max lashed out at Mercedes and the crowd for celebrating after crashing him out. Redbull team principal Christian Horner also lashed out at Mercedes and Hamilton for celebrating a ‘Hollow’ win. Social media was divided too as to who was at fault for the crash BUT Lewis was subjected to Racial abuse online which F1, FIA and all the teams condemned immediately. The long battle with racism is still being fought to eradicate it from the sport.
Siddhant Mane for Luxpresso Magazine