Lewis Hamilton feels joie de vivre as he wins the French Grand Prix

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It was a sunny Sunday within the south of France and the motion on monitor was simply as scorching.

Whereas each Mercedes comfortably stayed forward of the remainder of the sector, Carlos Sainz received slipstream and was in a position to soar his teammate, Lando Norris, across the exterior of flip 1.

Additional behind, Daniel Ricciardo initially received away nicely, pulling alongside Sebastian Vettel however he was very cautious into flip 1, permitting each Pierre Gasly and Antonio Giovinazzi to get previous him into flip 1.

Because the drivers headed into flip three, Sergio Perez locked his entrance proper and went off the monitor. Nevertheless, regardless of following the official process of re-entering the monitor after going previous the bollard, Perez gained two positions and was awarded a five-second time penalty by the stewards for leaving the monitor and gaining a bonus.

The stewards’ determination confused Racing Level’s workforce principal, Otmar Szafnauer, who instructed Sky Sports activities’ David Croft and Martin Brundle, “I’m probably not positive what else Checo [Perez] was meant to do. The best way I noticed it was Checo did what he was instructed to do [before the race].”

The 2 Williams of George Russell and Robert Kubica had a little bit of wheel-to-wheel motion with each other as Russell tried to overhaul Kubica across the exterior of Signes Nook. Russell was unable to get previous as he ran out of highway and stayed behind Kubica for the remainder of the race.

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Daniel Ricciardo was one of many first to come back into the pits to attempt for the overcut over Pierre Gasly, who pitted on the next lap. At first, it seemed as if the over-cut didn’t work as Gasly got here out forward of Ricciardo however the Australian was in a position to breeze previous Gasly comfortably on the Mistral Straight.

Daniel Ricciardo Renault

Renault driver Daniel Ricciardo (picture by Stephen Blackberry/Motion Plus by way of Getty Pictures)

Ricciardo’s former teammate, Max Verstappen, was combating with the Ferraris as soon as once more this afternoon and he additionally aimed for the over-cut which was profitable as Vettel was behind Verstappen as soon as each drivers had made their pit cease. Leclerc, in the meantime, was comfortably forward of the 2 in third place.

One other nice battle was rising between Kimi Raikkonen within the Alfa Romeo and Nico Hulkenberg within the Renault. Hulkenberg was actually given a run for his cash as he got here on workforce radio to say, “Jesus, these guys [Alfa Romeo] are quick down the straight.”

Raikkonen went for the undercut, which was profitable as when Hulkenberg pitted just a few laps afterwards, Raikkonen was just a few seconds forward of him.

Then got here drama for Lando Norris within the McLaren as he suffered from hydraulic issues. Firstly, he was instructed over the workforce radio that he was not allowed to make use of DRS, even when accessible. It’s thought that there may not have been sufficient hydraulic strain to open the DRS flap and that the workforce have been involved that the DRS flap wouldn’t shut.

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Then, Norris reported dangerous upshifts and was instructed that this was a part of the hydraulic issues. The issue solely received worse as he was then instructed that the automotive was going to change into extra unstable and that the steering would change into heavier.

Lastly, to high all of it off, Norris was being pursued by Ricciardo, Raikkonen and Hulkenberg. Ricciardo made an overtake across the exterior of Norris into the chicane on the Mistral Straight however took all 4 wheels off the monitor.

When he got here again on the monitor, Ricciardo nudged Norris off the monitor, permitting the Australian in addition to Raikkonen and Hulkenberg to get previous the wounded McLaren.

Ricciardo was handed by Raikkonen however was in a position to get again previous on the exit of the chicane though he did take all 4 wheels over the white line as soon as once more.

The stewards determined to research this incident.

Sadly, for the TV viewers at dwelling, the TV director determined that this was not the battle to observe dwell, as a substitute chopping to the not-so-exciting battle between Bottas and Leclerc. Daniel Ricciardo remarked that this was a poor determination in his post-race interview.

Out entrance, it was one other 1-2 end for Mercedes with Lewis Hamilton taking the chequered flag. There have been crumbs of consolation for Lando Norris, who gained driver of the day, and Sebastian Vettel, who received the bonus level for setting the quickest lap of the race.

Hamilton instructed Martin Brundle, “It’s undoubtedly been a extremely good weekend. This has been our greatest begin to the yr so we’ve received to take pleasure in it.”

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Hamilton has now prolonged his lead within the drivers’ championship to 36 factors whereas Mercedes have prolonged their lead within the constructors’ championship to 140 factors over Ferrari.

There’s not lengthy to attend till the Austrian Grand Prix, which takes place subsequent week on the Crimson Bull Ring within the picturesque Styrian Mountains.


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