Vettel wins, Hamilton second at Silverstone

Lewis Hamilton

It could have been a lot worse for Hamilton, who saw his deficit to championship leader and race victor Sebastian Vettel grow from one point to eight ahead of the German Grand Prix.

Hamilton started his Mercedes badly from pole position and was hit by the other Ferrari of Kimi Raikkonen as he tried to cling on to third.

The German four-time champion seized the lead at the start and fought back after losing the initiative during two safety auto periods to register his second win at Silverstone and the 51st of his career.

Victory on Sunday will see Hamilton reclaim the overall lead from Vettel, who has a one point advantage after nine races. Sauber's Marcus Ericsson loses control over his vehicle and crashes one of the safety walls.

"With the whole build up, with the whole intensity, with the whole spur-of-the-moment thing, knowing how close we were, for me it feels like one of the best laps that I've been able to produce", he said. "I'm not anxious", he said yesterday.

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While Raikkonen was handed a 10-second time penalty for the incident, Hamilton immediately set about climbing back through the field as the contact had left him with minimal - if any - damage.

But the headlines belong to Vettel, who suffered a neck injury during practice on Saturday and was forced to wear supportive tape during the race, but came through for his fourth win of the season. The Spaniard finished 2.835 seconds slower than Hamilton. That promoted Nico Hulkenberg - surprisingly one-stopping on hard tires - to take sixth place ahead of Esteban Ocon, Fernando Alonso, Kevin Magnussen and Pierre Gasly. "You're the fastest out there by miles", he said.

As they headed into the final five laps, the top four cars were separated by only 1.6 seconds with the two Red Bulls in pursuit until, on lap 47, Verstappen spun at Club and Vettel squeezed past Bottas, at Brooklands, to seize the initiative.

It was not to be for Lewis Hamilton.

Raikkonen was at fault for the coming together and the stewards concurred as they slapped the Ferrari driver with a 10-second penalty. Valtteri Bottas (FIN/Mercedes) 8.883, 5. Sergio Pérez (MEX/Force India) 34.708, 12.

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