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French GP: Hamilton dominates and wins ahead of Bottas

  • Published on 23 Jun 2019 16:37
  • comments 20
  • By: Fergal Walsh

Lewis Hamilton has won the French Grand Prix at the Circuit Paul Ricard, taking his fourth consecutive race victory.

Hamilton led every lap of the race as he held off the competition off the line, and didn't even relinquish his lead when he made his one and only pit stop on lap, later than most of his rivals bar Sebastian Vettel.

Vettel stayed out the latest of the front runners, as he aimed to recover from a poor qualifying result on Saturday. However, the German couldn't reach any further than the, equalling his lowest score of the season.

After two races without a one-two finish, Mercedes returned to the top two steps of the podium, as Bottas crossed the line over 15 seconds down on his teammate.

Bottas came under pressure from Charles Leclerc on the last lap, however the Finn was able to hold him off.

The Monegasque driver was third, picking up his third podium finish of the year. Leclerc was the first of the top three to pit on lap 22, with the two Mercedes' pitting on the following laps.

Max Verstappen ran a lonely race to pick up fourth place, while his teammate Pierre Gasly went only backwards during the 53 laps, and crossed the line outside the top ten.

Midfield battle sees last lap fight

McLaren looked comfortable to pick up fifth and sixth at the chequered flag, however towards the end of the race, Lando Norris' car picked up an issue.

Daniel Ricciardo closed in on him while behind, Nico Hulkenberg and Kimi Raikkonen got involved as they squabbled for sixth, as Sainz was clear further up the road.

Ricciardo made the move at the chicane along the Mistral Straight, but went wide, while Norris also went wide on the exit.

Raikkonen then shuffled past both of them before Ricciardo came back at him, putting all four wheels over the white lines to get the move done. Norris was pushed down to tenth place, but picked up the driver of the day award for his efforts.

It was another tough day for Haas who picked up the only retirement of the race, as Romain Grosjean pulled into his garage in the final laps.

Kevin Magnussen also struggled for pace, while Toro Rosso couldn't break into the top ten.

Lance Stroll went long on his opening stint and was quick towards the end of the race, but couldn't catch the cars ahead quick enough to battle for points. He finished P13 behind teammate Sergio Perez, who picked up a time penalty for leaving the track and gaining an advantage on the opening lap.

FR Paul Ricard - 23 June 2019

Photos France 2019

Replies (20)

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  • abhidbgt

    Posts: 118

    P7, P8, P9 and P10 was awesome.
    Even on used hard tyres Mercedes was only 20 milliseconds off for fastest lap. That's some blistering pace.
    I feel Norris deserved driver of the day. Raikkonen was definitely a close second. He fended off Hulkenberg for whole of the race.
    The competitiveness in mid field overshadows work done by sharp end guys, isn't it? Austria should be fun. It's more straights and less corners.

    • + 0
    • Jun 23 2019 - 17:13
    • The midfield is what has made the last seasons. I feel it was a good thing that the midfield was filmed so much this race, that is where the action is, and that was really the only compelling thing about this race. And I too look forward to Austria.

      • + 0
      • Jun 23 2019 - 19:23
    • Agree, Norris and Raikkonen both looked really good. Ricciardio also had a very solid race. Austria, really? It's probably my least favorite track of the season. Not much interesting to it and it's over in a minute and a bit. Qualy is usually pretty good but like Monaco, it's usually the highlight of the weekend. I've watched the replay of the Monaco qualy a few times now. Amazing! Maybe Max will give some action next weekend as he has nothing to lose by being aggressive. I was amazed to see him use caution in the race when wheel to wheel racing where in the past he might have pushed it and crashed. He lost the place but raced and finished strong. Even though he didn't finish as high as he would have liked, he didn't have any major incidents, and the drive was one of his most mature this season. Overall, though for the midfield the McLarens looked great again and the Renaults look like they are improving. Racing Point and HAAS disappointing again, but they have their strong circuits.

      • + 0
      • Jun 24 2019 - 04:44
    • abhidbgt

      Posts: 118

      Not because it's a circuit with much characteristic but because what it could offer in this championship, a non-mercedes winner. Also I like the elevation changes. Last year I think Sebastian pulled a great move on Lewis here.

      • + 0
      • Jun 24 2019 - 05:09
  • At this rate i genuinely believe that we will see 21 Mercedes wins

    • + 3
    • Jun 23 2019 - 18:23
    • abhidbgt

      Posts: 118

      Highly probable.

      • + 0
      • Jun 23 2019 - 18:50
    • You mean you don't believe Marko's statement that they will win 2-3 races this season?

      • + 0
      • Jun 24 2019 - 04:31
    • abhidbgt

      Posts: 118

      This season has really shown that Mercedes can never be written off. Predict at your own peril. :D

      • + 0
      • Jun 24 2019 - 05:32
    • It was five I think

      • + 0
      • Jun 24 2019 - 15:40
  • The more this season moves on, the more the budget cap feels vindicated, and the more I look at the series with BoP and wonder how F1 would've looked with it.

    • + 0
    • Jun 23 2019 - 19:27
    • But Mercedes is so efficient, they'll probably go even further ahead

      • + 0
      • Jun 23 2019 - 19:31
    • But since they are so efficient they'd be the most balanced, since BoP is primarily meant to level a heavily skewed field. In Super GT, Lexus had a similar advantage in the GT500 series was way ahead of Honda and Nissan a few races ago, but BoP dropped them so that Nissan and Honda at least won a few races.

      • + 0
      • Jun 23 2019 - 19:50
  • xoya

    Posts: 383

    If Gasly isn't sacked by Belgian GP, I'd be amazed by Helmut's newfound patience.

    • + 0
    • Jun 23 2019 - 20:25
    • Or maybe he has just discovered the soothing properties of Oxazepam? It has kinda been quiet on his front the last months...

      • + 1
      • Jun 23 2019 - 22:07
    • Looked like Herr Marko had his face dragged through the gravel in the close ups of him this weekend, maybe the Russian mob paid him a visit to convince him to put Kvyat in a RB after summer break. I don't have the stats handy but I believe that it's only 1 or 2 races that Gasly has come in higher than Kvyat in the 'b' car.

      • + 0
      • Jun 24 2019 - 04:29
    • I mean they could switch Kvyat and Gasly first, let Gas fight Albon and Kvyat get a second shot in the bigsis team. And then, when Albon is mature, he might get a shot if Kvyat doesn't shine.

      • + 0
      • Jun 24 2019 - 18:15
  • f1ski

    Posts: 413

    Mercedes has such an advantage in hp over the field because of the rules on development when the hybrid era began. I agree with the possibility of a BOP program or perhaps a higher fuel allotment for other teams to allow more power (rpm) I still think refueling would create more equitable racing as it helps alternative strategies or allow teams to not have to use 2 compounds and not to have to use the qualifying tire from q2 if you didn’t finish on the podium. The tires should only be black so teams don’t know others strategies

    • + 0
    • Jun 24 2019 - 00:59
    • From what I've seen it's a consensus in the paddock that Ferrari has the most powerful engine but the Mercs have the best overall package. With the overall future viability of the sport I just don't see things going in the direction of refueling. People want to see more advanced racing cars not going back to old tech.

      • + 0
      • Jun 25 2019 - 02:31
  • mcbhargav

    Posts: 969

    Kubica, Gasly, Grosjean, and Giovinazzi. Time and again, they aren't helping themselves with these performances.

    • + 0
    • Jun 24 2019 - 20:05
  • My gut feel is Mercedes would win regardless of the cap, they just don't make many mistakes. Ferrari for all the money they spend, and are given at the start of the season really need to deliver but are continuously coming up short - must be big pressure mounting there ....

    • + 0
    • Jun 24 2019 - 22:32

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Formula 1 Calendar - 2019

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Spain
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Spain
15 - Mar 17
Australia
29 - Mar 31
Bahrain
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12 - Apr 14
China
26 - Apr 28
Azerbaijan
10 - May 12
Spain
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Spain
23 - May 26
Monaco
7 - Jun 9
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21 - Jun 23
France
28 - Jun 30
Austria
12 - Jul 14
United Kingdom
26 - Jul 28
Germany
2 - Aug 4
Hungary
30 - Sep 1
Belgium
6 - Sep 8
Italy
20 - Sep 22
Singapore
27 - Sep 29
Russian
11 - Oct 13
Japan
25 - Oct 27
Mexico
1 - Nov 3
United States of America
15 - Nov 17
Brazil
29 - Dec 1
United Arab Emirates
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Formula 1 Calendar - 2019

Date
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15 - Mar 17
Australia Albert Park
29 - Mar 31
12 - Apr 14
26 - Apr 28
Azerbaijan Baku City Circuit
10 - May 12
23 - May 26
Monaco Monte Carlo
7 - Jun 9
21 - Jun 23
France Paul Ricard
28 - Jun 30
Austria Red Bull Ring
12 - Jul 14
United Kingdom Silverstone
26 - Jul 28
Germany Hockenheimring
2 - Aug 4
Hungary Hungaroring
30 - Sep 1
6 - Sep 8
Italy Monza
20 - Sep 22
27 - Sep 29
Russian Sochi Autodrom
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25 - Oct 27
1 - Nov 3
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15 - Nov 17
Brazil Interlagos
29 - Dec 1
United Arab Emirates Yas Marina Circuit
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