Here were the quali highlights for the 2019 US GP;
It was a race that secured Lewis Hamilton as 6 time World Champion. Love him or hate him; this is an achievement that will go down in history.
It was Lewis’s 150th podium, and a race that was full of twists and turns. So here is the rundown for the 2019 US GP;
From the beginning of the race, Hamilton was making sure that an 8th place finish wasn’t how he was going to claim his 6th championship. He had a great start, but so did Bottas. Norris and Ricciardo also had a great start, making sure to keep out of trouble early on.
The Ferraris did have a good start but very quickly started to lose places. Norris made a great pass on Vettel and Leclerc wasn’t having much luck either. It seemed like Vettel and Leclerc were struggling to heat up their tyres and It was costing them pace.
By lap seven, Bottas was still in the lead, and Verstappen was hot on his tail. Hamilton was close by, but even still, the Ferraris were struggling. In the midfield Gasly was in eighth with Sainz gaining quickly.
It was a disaster for Ferrari, on lap eight Vettel had severe suspension failure and limped to a DNF. A terrible start to the US GP for the Tifosi. It looked like a sausage curb on turn 8 caused the suspension to break, and soon Ferrari was on the radio to Leclerc warning him of the corner.
In the midfield, Magnussen and Kvyat had a great battle, and on lap twelve Bottas, Verstappen, and Hamilton were still running in the front. However, Verstappen was beginning to struggle with the pace of the Mercedes, and soon Hamilton was gaining. Verstappen continued to struggle with balance through the high-speed corners and soon pitted. He switched from hards to mediums to try and gain time on Hamilton.
Mercedes responded by pitting Bottas for an undercut. Ferrari were still struggling with pace, so after his pitstop Bottas quickly overtook Leclerc.
Albon had high pace throughout the race, but he did have damage, this caused him to start losing two seconds per lap on lap 17. Meanwhile in 7th Perez was having another great race hanging on in the top ten.
Ferrari’s bad luck continued as a pit stop was held up by the right front tyre not playing the game, it cost them precious seconds with a 7.7-second pit stop. Hamilton refused to box, again defying team orders. This was a bad call as Bottas quickly attacked lewis to take the lead, Hamilton’s tyres couldn’t keep up. Verstappen still didn’t have the pace and was just that much farther away from Mercedes.
Turn 9 wasn’t helping any of the drivers, it continued to cause a lot of trouble.
The controversial tyre performance graphic was back, and people were not happy about it.
At one point Hamilton’s tyres were at 60% and within a couple of minutes it went to 30%… will they keep this very inaccurate graphic for future races?
Albon proved his worth to Red Bull by overtaking Ricciardo and taking 5th on lap 38. Hamilton was on the radio complaining about his tyres, and by lap 42 the team radio was telling him his tyres would in fact not last.
Noris was leading Ricciardo by 3 seconds on lap 43, it was turning out to be an excellent race for both the Mclaren’s. Still, with bad pace, Leclerc holds onto p4.
With 6 laps to go, it’s close with the top three. Bottas tries to take Hamilton but has to go wide, he uses DRS to gain as Hamilton makes small mistakes, this is making it a lot easier for Bottas.
Lap 52, and Verstappen is only 4 seconds away from the Mercedes’s, Bottas soon retakes the lead from Hamilton. His tyres are just not cutting it. Verstappen shouts down the radio to unlock full power, desperate to close on Hamilton.
On lap 55 Magnussen crashes onto the gravel, with what looks like break failure. A disaster for Haas at their home GP.
Bottas takes home the trophy, but the spotlight is on Hamilton as he takes his 6th World Championship. A moment that seemed to be overwhelming for Hamilton as he sobed into his helmet. He is up there with the greats now, not somewhere he expected to be at all.
There was also another important celebration as Carlos Sainz celebrated his 100th race, and what a great one it was finishing 8th. Not bad.
Here is the full race classification;
He is one championship ahead of Fangio and one behind Schumacher, so who knows what the future holds for this groundbreaking British driver. But one thing is for sure, his 2019 season will go down as one of his best.
“My Dad told me when I was six or seven years old never to give up, it’s the family motto. I don’t know about championships, but as an athlete I feel fresh as can be right now. I’m ready for the next race, we’ll keep pushing”Hamilton, 2019 US GP