X

Saturday 14
December

Formula 1

Safety car help played down by Hamilton

15th July 2019, 12:45 by Craig Smithson

Lewis Hamilton claims the safety car's presence during the British Grand Prix "made no difference" because he would have won the race.

The 34-year-old claimed a record home race win at Silverstone and picked up an extra point for posting the fastest lap, moving him 39 points clear of Mercedes team-mate Valtteri Bottas in the World Championship standings.

However, as Bottas started the race on pole position, it was suggested the deployment of the safety car on lap 20 following Antonio Giovinazzi's crash effectively handed Hamilton a free pit-stop to remain ahead of his Finnish rival, who had earlier stopped on lap 16.

But the five-time world champion revealed Mercedes' pre-race strategy was for the driver in second place to use hard compound tyres for the second stint of the race.

And while Bottas took a second pit-stop on lap 45, Hamilton managed to progress through 31 laps to the finish on the hard tyres, so he claims the safety car scenario had no bearing on the outcome.

He said: "I was going to do a one-stop and he was on a two, so it wouldn't have made any difference, the safety car wouldn't have made a difference.

"When he pitted on lap 16 my plan was to offset as much as I could, so I think I went four laps or something and probably could have done another lap or two.

"At the time he was not catching me, which he should have been, but I was keeping the gap the same. I think he came out of the pits seven-tenths inside my window, so I would have pitted and he would be seven-tenths ahead, then it came to one second, one-and-a-half, and stayed around one-and-a-half to two.

"If I did another lap maybe it would have been two-and-a-half and I would have come out on my fresh hards, and I could have just sat behind him if I wanted to and he would have had to pit, so would still have had that 21-second gap. So it didn't really make a difference."

This article originated on sportinastorm.com

Craig Smithson is a journalist with over two decades of experience at the keyboard. A life-long Middlesbrough fan, Craig has an in-depth knowledge of all football and is also a keen fan of boxing amongst other sports.

More Williams

Formula 1

Russell expecting big improvement

14th December 2019, 17:37

Williams can put last season’s disastrous campaign firmly behind them and fight in midfield next term, according to George Russell.

Formula 1

Jordan tips Hamilton to make Ferrari move

14th December 2019, 14:20

Former Formula 1 team boss Eddie Jordan is confident Lewis Hamilton will leave Mercedes and drive for Ferrari in the near future.

Formula 1

Verstappen has the talent to succeed - Ricciardo

14th December 2019, 13:20

Daniel Ricciardo says former Red Bull team-mate Max Verstappen has the ability and skill to win the Drivers' Championship.

Formula 1

Kubica admits F1 career looks over

13th December 2019, 15:09

Robert Kubica has admitted his F1 career could be over, describing his chances of featuring on the grid again as "very slim".

Formula 1

Hamilton fires warning to Mercedes' rivals

13th December 2019, 10:59

Lewis Hamilton has warned his rivals that he believes there is still room for improvement at Mercedes.

Formula 1

Ferrari would not let Wolff become top dog

12th December 2019, 19:02

Ferrari say they would use all means possible to stop Mercedes boss Toto Wolff becoming Formula 1's new chief.

Recent Sport Headlines

Inter Milan

Inter line up Alonso alternative

14th December 2019, 20:02

Inter Milan will reportedly move for Parma’s Matteo Darmian in January if Chelsea refuse to budge on their valuation of Marcos Alonso.

Southampton

Southampton 0-1 West Ham

14th December 2019, 20:02

Southampton slumped to their sixth home defeat of the campaign as West Ham United clinched a well-merited 1-0 victory at St Mary’s.

Rugby Union

Milner-Skudder confirms further Toulon delay

14th December 2019, 19:37

New Zealand international Nehe Milner-Skudder’s switch to Toulon has been delayed further due to an ongoing shoulder injury.

Real Madrid

Bale still has role to play – Zidane

14th December 2019, 19:36

Real Madrid boss Zinedine Zidane insists Gareth Bale is still in his plans despite overlooking the winger in recent weeks.

Horse Racing

Altior 'unlikely' to run in King George VI

14th December 2019, 18:43

Trainer Nicky Henderson admits Altior is "extremely unlikely" to run in the Ladbrokes King George VI this month.

Boxing

Khan hints at retirement in 2020

14th December 2019, 18:32

Amir Khan has hinted he could call time on his career in 2020 after revealing it may be his "final big year".

Rugby Union

Glasgow looking to tie down winger

14th December 2019, 18:21

Glasgow Warriors are hoping to tie winger Tommy Seymour down to a new contract, according to head coach Dave Rennie.

Liverpool

Wijnaldum injury takes shine off Liverpool win

14th December 2019, 18:16

Liverpool now hold a 10-point lead at the top of the Premier League but an injury picked up by Georginio Wijnaldum took the shine off their win over Watford.