First again: Lewis Hamilton wins the Portuguese Grand Prix Photo: AFP
auto racing

Hamilton wins Portuguese Grand Prix for 97th career victory

12 Comments

Lewis Hamilton delivered a flawless drive in his Mercedes to win the Portuguese Grand Prix on Sunday from his arch title rival Max Verstappen.

Seven-time world champion Hamilton's 97th Grand Prix triumph extended his early season lead over Red Bull's Verstappen in the Formula One drivers' standings to eight points.

In third place in Portimao was pole-sitter Valtteri Bottas in the other Mercedes with Sergio Perez in the second Red Bull in fourth.

"That was such a tough race physically and mentally. I didn't get a good start and also lost out at the restart but it was a great result in the end," said Hamilton. "Today wasn't all perfect and we need to get ready now for the quick turnaround for Spain."

At a sun-drenched Algarve International Circuit Bottas led Hamilton from the two Red Bulls into the first corner.

By the end of lap one it was the safety car which led after the two Alfa Romeos collided, with Kimi Raikkonen's front wing littered across the straight after clipping Antonio Giovinazzi's car.

Bottas carefully controlled the rolling restart on lap seven but in his rearview mirror he will have seen Verstappen charge past Hamilton and into second.

"That a boy" was the pleased reaction on the team radio from the Red Bull pits.

But four laps later and a mistake by the Dutchman on turn 14 let Hamilton regain second, darting past on the inside with Verstappen snapping: "I'm just a sitting duck on the straight. It's unbelievable."

Hamilton hit the front with a superb sweeping move past Bottas at the start of lap 20, quickly establishing daylight between the Mercedes men.

Verstappen was the first of the leading group to pit on lap 36, with Bottas next, followed by Hamilton, with Perez yet to change tires, in front.

With 13 laps left Hamilton pushed past Perez to regain control of the third leg of the record 23-race season, and from there the race was his to lose.

"I think Max made a mistake at some point and that was perfect. With Valtteri I had to make the move early on before the tyres were destroyed and I just managed to get him at turn one. Right on my limit. Great race," added Hamilton.

"We were not on top of it here but we'll see what we can do in Barcelona," said Verstappen, referring to next weekend's race in Spain.

Intrigue in the closing stages surrounded the question of who would end up with a potentially crucial point for the fastest lap.

Verstappen thought he'd clinched it only for his effort to be ruled out due to track limits with Bottas eventually taking the honors.

The Red Bulls are emerging as serious challengers to Mercedes' supremacy but the world champions have evidently worked hard to redress any imbalance in performance between the two teams.

And after three legs of the season it is Hamilton in his quest for a record eighth world crown that has won twice, adding this to his opening success in Bahrain, with Verstappen the winner in Imola.

Sitting third in the drivers' standings is Lando Norris for resurgent McLaren after the Briton took fifth on Sunday.

He came in ahead of the Ferrari of Charles Leclerc, with the Alpines of Esteban Ocon and Fernando Alonso, Daniel Ricciardo (McLaren) and the AlphaTauri of Pierre Gasly completing the top 10.

© 2021 AFP

©2021 GPlusMedia Inc.


12 Comments
Login to comment

Motor Racing

Well-written article. Lots of interest throughout the field. Good to see Alonso and the Alpine team gaining strength at last, and the same for Norris and McLaren.

The gap is only eight points, with hundreds still available this season and around 20 races to go.

Give Hamilton his 100 GP wins and I suspect he will move on to other interests.

Max is getting there, but it’s hard on the ego, as Vettel and Bottas have shown repeatedly.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

The Red Bulls are emerging as serious challengers to Mercedes' supremacy

Utter trash media fake-optimisim. Exactly how the FIA told them to report it in their guidelines.

This is the actual truth:

After 3 races, out of the 9 available podium positions, 5 have been taken by Mercedes drivers, 3 by Red Bull and 1 by McLaren (powered by Mercedes). The fact that Red Bull won 1 race in that tally is pure happenstance.... meaning it's entirely dependent on Valteri Bottas' performance.

What all this means is that any media calims to the contrary are pure disingenuous hype when even a child can see that Mercedes have the fastest car by far, three(!) races in, and the only way any other team can even get a foot in the door is if the Mercedes "wing man" under-performs on cue.

As for Hamiltons soon-to-be 100 wins, there's absolutely nothing credible about the vast majority of those wins when Mercedes has held F1 hostage for the best part of 10 years. The only way someone like myself will ever believe Hamilton is the best in the field is if he goes to ANY other team and still wins a championship, while Mercedes is still campaigning. The fact is he can't, he will be blown away by whoever takes his place at Mercedes and he'll never win a championships again (and possibly a race depending on the team). Every single one of Hamilton's so-called "fans" knows this. Fans in the sense that the overwhelming majority are fair weather supporters, only posting support on line because he wins thanks to the car underneath him.

-6 ( +2 / -8 )

@hillclimber

I've stated before, that for Hamilton to be considered the best, he needs to win a title at another team.

-6 ( +1 / -7 )

Utter trash media fake-optimisim. Exactly how the FIA told them to report it in their guidelines.

What 'guidelines'? Utter trash media fake conspiracy?

As for Hamiltons soon-to-be 100 wins, there's absolutely nothing credible about the vast majority of those wins when Mercedes has held F1 hostage for the best part of 10 years.

You're quite angry aren't you? How about yesterday's win? Why didn't Bottas win, or Max stop him getting past him?

Every single one of Hamilton's so-called "fans" knows this.

Since I don't then you are 100% wrong.

Who is the best driver in your raging opinion?

5 ( +6 / -1 )

Red Bull actually have the faster car (marginally, agreed), but it seems to be the total package that is just keeping Mercedes ahead so far, and Max's tiny mistakes. Hamilton is paid and kept on by Mercedes as they reckon he is the best available. If it was the car that was winning, Bottas should be equal and level with him every season. The Honda engine is (now) brilliant, and Red Bull's bet on it finally leapfrogging all the other engines was genius.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

I've stated before, that for Hamilton to be considered the best, he needs to win a title at another team.

For example, at a team like Mclaren? Do you now consider him the best?

1 ( +3 / -2 )

@ClippertyClop

For example, at a team like Mclaren? Do you now consider him the best?

They are always moving the goalpost when POC prove their myth of superiority is wrong!

Hamilton = GOAT

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Numan, I do not know who 'they' are, but Hamilton has succeeded in stepping out of the tired old skin colo(u)r game. The Queen even knighted him. Now he wants to help others realize their dreams, regardless of any glass ceilings.

Whatever mix of colo(u)rs your skin might be, they fade away into unimportance if you concentrate hard enough.

He is not perfect, but he does his damn level best. Respect.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

@nandakandamanda

Numan, I do not know who 'they' are, but Hamilton has succeeded in stepping out of the tired old skin colo(u)r game. The Queen even knighted him. Now he wants to help others realize their dreams, regardless of any glass ceilings.

Whatever mix of colo(u)rs your skin might be, they fade away into unimportance if you concentrate hard enough.

He is not perfect, but he does his damn level best. Respect.

Yeah, I do not know what "skin color game" you are referring to.

Is that what you call racial prejudice or racism, "skin color game"?

Lewis Hamilton Discusses Racism in Formula 1: Drive To Survive | Netflix

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qepog4PaeI8

> Hamilton opens up on his experiences of racism, inequality and diversity in F1

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qYSt1bgiCWE

You obviously have no clue about Hamilton's view about prejudice and his acknowledgement.

The Queen even knighted him. Now he wants to help others realize their dreams, regardless of any glass ceilings.

Whatever mix of colo(u)rs your skin might be, they fade away into unimportance if you concentrate hard enough.

Nice attempt to change the focus. An award from queen of an empire founded on colonizing POC does not negate the evidence that criticism of Hamilton's accomplishments have deep seated roots in elitism, prejudice and racism because he (POC) is the GOAT in a sport that is mostly popular with Europeans.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Spain this weekend.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

ClippetyClopMay 3  06:27 pm JST

What 'guidelines'? Utter trash media fake conspiracy?

FIA is desperately trying to stop a mass exodus of hopefuls who religiously watch this so-called "competition" in the hopes that sometimes....maaaaybe this season (after 9!!!!!) some other team might dominate... even a little.... instead of #$#%" Mercedes. The guidelines are to hype up every other team and downplay Mercedes. You know this already, as does everyone who thinks Mercedes actually has to try to win.

You're quite angry aren't you? How about yesterday's win? Why didn't Bottas win, or Max stop him getting past him?

Nope, no angry at all. That's your go-to response to anyone who presents facts in deference to your opinion. Why didn' Bottas win? Hahahaha! He'S the WINGMAN..... Toto will only let him win when it won't make Hamilton look like very very ordinary.

Since I don't then you are 100% wrong.

Well you're not a real Hamilton fan, then.

Who is the best driver in your raging opinion?

Schumacher/Prost/Fangio/Senna/Clark are all (far) better than Hamilton when in their prime of course, but if you're talking about the current field, then Verstappen and Ricciardo (on a good day) are better than Hamilton on any day. Put them all in identical Mercedes cars and Ricciardo will dump on Hamilton in overtaking every day of the week. Verstappen - with actual power underneath him for once, will simply put down faster laps than Hamilton can. What Hamilton will do in a race though is sacrifice both of them by driving like a complete lunatic and wreck his car and theirs.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

@Hillclimber

Schumacher/Prost/Fangio/Senna/Clark are all (far) better than Hamilton when in their prime of course, but if you're talking about the current field, then Verstappen and Ricciardo (on a good day) are better than Hamilton on any day. Put them all in identical Mercedes cars and Ricciardo will dump on Hamilton in overtaking every day of the week. Verstappen - with actual power underneath him for once, will simply put down faster laps than Hamilton can. What Hamilton will do in a race though is sacrifice both of them by driving like a complete lunatic and wreck his car and theirs.

LOL! Hamilton just beat Verstappen to win his 100!

Hamilton is the Goat!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Login to leave a comment

Facebook users

Use your Facebook account to login or register with JapanToday. By doing so, you will also receive an email inviting you to receive our news alerts.

Facebook Connect

Login with your JapanToday account

User registration

Articles, Offers & Useful Resources

A mix of what's trending on our other sites