Hamilton retakes F1 lead with 'miracle' victory in Germany

Hockenheim - Lewis Hamilton's spectacular victory was under threat on Sunday when he was summoned to the stewards for an aborted pit stop during the safety vehicle period of the German Grand Prix.

"I think for Lewis the safety vehicle was better timed", he shrugged.

But after the inquiry, it wad decided Hamilton would not lost his victory and instead be issued with a reprimand.

"The rain has come down and washed away all the negativity and its a glorious day", Hamilton said, his voice wobbling.

"Whilst that is the goal, and that is the dream scenario, nothing ever goes perfectly, but I am going to work towards it". I honestly thought I was going to stay out, I was happy with my tyres.

A devastated Vettel was nearly in tears as he apologised to his Ferrari team, while the position of the stricken SF71-H required a Safety Car period.

Pushed on whether the team was Ferrari, he replied: "You can make whatever assumption you want".

"It's great to be here on Mercedes home ground and to get the one-two". "It was just one of those moments. This was up there with them".

It is the first time Hamilton has come from lower than sixth on the grid to win a Grand Prix, and it sets alight once more the fierce title duel with Vettel - as both chase a fifth championship.

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"It was a tricky race with the rain and it was pretty slippery in a few places".

That allowed Vettel, Raikkonen's Ferrari team-mate, to hold off a Hamilton recovery and stretch his lead at the top of the drivers' standings to eight points at the end of a potentially decisive triple-header.

The crowds have dwindled since the Schumacher era, despite Vettel winning four titles between 2010-13 and the domination of Mercedes with Nico Rosberg taking the crown in 2016. Taking positives as a team, ideal result for us, " said Bottas, who added - seemingly half-heartedly - that he "understood" the team's call.

Vettel, though, was the driver to encounter the major drama as he slid wide into the banked Sachs Kurve on lap 52, skated across the gravel, and hit the barriers.

Hamilton put an end to more than seven months of agonising contract negotiations to finally commit his future to both Formula One and the Silver Arrows with a deal which will see him become the sport's first £40million-a-year driver.

"Yesterday, we saw how bad it can be and in 24 hours, it can all turn around".

That error came just over a lap before Vettel went straight on at Sachskurve at relatively low speed, but the home favorite was unable to turn the auto before the front wing was buried in the barrier and he couldn't rejoin. "I didn't get past him, and then I was told to minimise the risk".

Asked if the crossing of the pitlane entry line brought with it a certain penalty, Whiting said: "I don't think there is a specific precedent". With Mercedes wobbling, and Hamilton getting agitated, the timing seems right for Vettel to strike another blow at Hockenheim on Sunday.

  • Lawrence Cooper