Record-breaker in Hungary

F1-Grand-Prix-of-Hungary-Practice-2093448With near-record high temperatures in Budapest on Sunday, the stage was set for some exciting racing at the 2013 Hungarian Grand Prix. MercedesLewis Hamilton walked away with his fourth win in Hungary, tying the winning record of F1 legend Michael Schumacher and surpassing the total number of laps lead, previously held by Ayrton Senna. Hamilton gained his first win of the season, braking a stale 10-race slump since his last win in Austin, Texas. The second Mercedes however was not so lucky. Nico Rosberg retired with an engine fire just 6 laps from the finish, after falling off the pace early on following contact with Romain Grosjean.

Grosjean once again showcased his talents as a young driver. The Frenchman held a top three position throughout the first half of the race until a questionable drive thru penalty set him back to finish 6th. Lotus‘ recovered a podium finish with Kimi Raikkonen, who finished second on the podium, despite Raikkonen qualifying three places behind Grosjean.

Rounding out the podium was Sebastian Vettel, who managed to maintain his points lead in lieu of an undoubtedly challenging race. Vettel battled a damaged front wing as well as KERS failure, identical to the issue which ended Mark Webber‘s Saturday qualifying. Webber rebounded from tenth position on the grid to finish just off the podium in fourth place.

Onto Ferrari, the Scuderia finishes with both drivers in the points: Fernando Alonso at fifth, Felipe Massa at 8th. Both cars seemed to be aggressive but neither could compete with the speed of Red Bull or Lotus. Is it a step back for Ferrari? Definitely not – the team has been hot and cold since Monaco and Sunday’s race builds upon Alonso’s German Grand Prix efforts.

In a strange turn of events, McLaren seem to have recovered quite a lot of speed following the new tire specifications. The Woking-based constructor finished with both cars in scoring position: 7th for Jenson Button and 9th for Sergio Perez. The tire strategy seems questionable to say the least (starting on Mediums then to Softs), but this is the best result we’ve seen from them so far this season. Force India was not so lucky today. Both of its cars were retired, Adrian Sutil very early on after a hydraulic issue and Paul di Resta with only 3 laps to go. Pastor Maldonado finishes 10th, collecting Williams’ first championship point of the season.

Rumors persist surrounding who will be appointed to the Red Bull #2 spot, vacated by Mark Webber at the end of the season. Red Bull has said that Toro Rosso‘s Jean-Eric Vergne is no longer in contention, which leaves the battle between Kimi Raikkonen and Daniel Ricciardo. Raikkonen topped Red Bull’s #1 man today, however Ricciardo fell from 8th on the grid to 13th at race end. Does the young Aussie have the legs to keep up with the front-runners? We think so.

Constructors will close up shop for two weeks, unable to work on the cars at all over this duration. So as they rest up for summer holiday, we hope you do as well!

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About zdoell

Graduate of Ithaca College, rowing coach, car fanatic.

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