Formula 1: Winners and Losers From the 2024 British Grand Prix

The Mercedes team celebrate Lewis Hamilton's victory 7 photos
Photo: @MercedesAMGF1
Max Verstappen congratulates Lewis HamiltonMax Verstappen waves to the crowdLando Norris leads Oscar PiastriSergio Perez in his carNico Hulkenberg ready to go out on trackCharles Leclerc on Hanger straight
Rain, cold temperatures, and mud. It could only be Silverstone in July, with the Grand Prix charabanc donning their thermals and winter coats for the final leg of a grueling triple header.
For seven of the ten Formula 1 teams, Silverstone is their home race. Personnel who typically don't have the chance to attend races get to see the fruits of their labor in full flight.

But who left Silverstone walking on sunshine and feeling the blues?

Winner: Lewis Hamilton

It had been a long time coming, but Hamilton is finally an F1 race winner after two and a half years of misery.

Now armed with a car which could match his talents, the seven-time world champion, a Silverstone specialist, was in the thick of the action right from the off, locking out the front row with Mercedes teammate George Russell.

In damp conditions, Hamilton kept in touch with his teammate before powering past his younger compatriot on Lap 18 to take the lead of the race.

Despite losing the lead two laps later to Lando Norris, the seven-time world champion remained a threat. On Lap 40, he retook the lead after his compatriot had botched his second stop.

The final 12 laps would have felt like an eternity, with every prang and vibration keeping the Brit on stalks. But the chequered flag waved by Queen's lead guitarist Brian May came at last, and Hamilton secured arguably one of the most emotional wins of his career and potentially the feel-good story of 2024.

Adding to the sweetness of his victory was the presence of Hamilton's family at the podium, with his father, Anthony, one of the first to embrace his son, along with teammate Russell, who retired on Lap 34.

Loser: Sergio Perez

When everyone is speculating about your F1 future potentially being in danger, the last thing you should do is drop a dud of a weekend.

Perez came into the Silverstone meeting under fire from all sides, and in qualifying, he thoroughly embarrassed himself by spinning off at Copse in Q1.

The enormity of the Mexican's foppish error was worsened by the fact he was on an out-lap after only just switching to the slicks, and with the track still damp, there was no need to be overzealous.

On race day, he started from the pitlane after an overnight engine change, but even with a fresh power unit, Perez made minimal progress through the order and finished 17th, two laps down.

One of the release clauses in Perez's contract requires him to be no more than 100 points or over five places behind Verstappen in the drivers' standings. Therefore, the Mexican must score in the Hungarian and Belgian GPs to cut down the 137-point gap between the pair or face the axe.

The Hungaroring, in particular, is tricky to pass at, adding further pressure on Perez, who has never been the best over one lap, to break a run of awful qualifying results and get amongst the top five.

Winner: Formula 1

After months of off-track scandals, rows over new teams being added to the grid, and the occasional on-track brawl, it was nice to see F1 have a positive story infiltrate the back pages.

Granted, a spectacular circuit and some typically awful English summertime weather helped turn the British GP into a humdinger, but Silverstone was easily the best race of the year.

There was something for everyone. Action up and down the field, an element of strategy, and rain kept everyone on their toes until the final lap.

It also seems fitting that the two best drivers in the world, Hamilton and Max Verstappen, finished first and second after producing brilliant performances.

The only qualm is that the race ended just as we were poised to see the great champions slug it out for victory in the closing stages. Providing traffic didn't play an unhelpful role in the closing stages; the Dutchman might have gotten within DRS range of the Brit on the final lap, potentially setting up a grandstand finish.

But in the end, the home hero held on, and you would be hard-pressed to find anyone who didn't feel happy to see F1's most popular driver finally tasting the winners' champagne in front of his adoring disciples.

Loser: McLaren

Two strategy calls. That's what separated McLaren from taking its second victory of 2024 and further reducing Red Bull and Verstappen's leads in both the drivers and constructors championships.

They certainly had the pace to win. Norris recovered from a poor opening lap to haul in both Mercedes cars and bounce into the lead on Lap 20, with teammate Oscar Piastri following suit.

Suddenly, a Mercedes 1-2 turned into a McLaren 1-2, but it looked like Piastri was quicker. The Australian closed the gap between himself and the Brit to just under a second. But McLaren made its first mistake in the race on Lap 29: They did not double-stack both drivers and kept Piastri out for one more lap, which cost him plenty of ground and on-track positions.

The second mistake came on Lap 40. Norris had been leading when he came in for his second stop, but in a rare momentarily lapse in concentration, he overshot his pit box, costing him the lead.

Switching to softs was the wrong decision, as Verstappen on hards quickly reeled the Brit in. Within nine laps of his second stop, the Dutchman powered past down Hanger straight, demoting Norris to third.

One silver lining for McLaren is that their disappointment over a third-fourth-place finish showcases how much progress the team has made since struggling for points 12 months ago.

Winner: Max Verstappen

Losing isn't in Verstappen's repertoire, but on a weekend when Red Bull looked, at best, the third-fastest car, a second-place finish will feel as good as a win.

Unlike in 2023, the reigning world champion hasn't got the dominant car at his disposal, but that didn't stop him from producing a performance which saw him ring everything out of Red Bull's RB20.

In qualifying after a rare trip through the Silverstone gravel trap, he had to contend with a damaged floor but still managed to split the McLaren duo by securing fourth on the grid.

On race day, Verstappen quickly pounced at Luffield when Norris opened the door on Lap 1. He kept both McLarens honest before their pace proved too strong for him to hold off. At one stage, it looked like Verstappen could finish as low as sixth, but a clever Red Bull strategy as rain began to fall put the Dutchman back into play, vaulting him from fifth to fourth.

When the rain relented, a switch to hards for the final stint allowed him to open up the taps and catch Norris with three laps to go for second.

By finishing second, Verstappen extended his championship lead over Norris from 81 points to 84, giving himself some breathing room in the drivers' standings with the summer break fast approaching.

Loser: Ferrari

The glorious celebrations in the harbor at Monte Carlo seem like ancient history nowadays, as another messy weekend continues to expose the team's digression since its excellent start to the European leg of the championship.

Ferrari's much-lauded upgrade package hasn't delivered the goods and slowed the team's SF-24, costing them ground in the development race.

The team's strategy department also made a pig's ear of the tricky conditions, with Charles Leclerc, who had moved from 11th to seventh by Lap 20, putting on intermediates way too early. With the track still bone dry, the Monegasque's tyres overheated, and he was forced to stop again for a fresh set, his race firmly wrecked.

This continues a trend of races in which poor decision-making has hamstrung Leclerc's races, firmly extinguishing any chance of a title charge.

One silver lining of a very difficult weekend for Ferrari was Sainz's performance. He again secured more decent points with his third consecutive top-six finish.

Winner: Nico Hulkenberg

It is very satisfying to watch a driver with vast experience extract the maximum out of a midfield car on course to securing an excellent haul of points.

Nico Hulkenberg has been doing just that in 2024, taking his Haas VF-24 to two top-six finishes, putting himself 11th in the drivers' standings.

Silverstone was the site of one of the German's most impressive weekends in F1, putting his Haas on row three ahead of both Aston Martins and Ferraris. Excluding a tepid opening lap where he lost three positions, Hulkenberg didn't put a foot wrong all weekend and richly deserved his sixth-place finish.

With 12 races left at Haas, before he moves to Stake/Audi for 2025, Hulkenberg's good form may help the American team challenge Aston Martin for fifth in the constructors' championship.

In the meantime, the focus will be on catching RB for sixth, but with the German driving as well as he is, they should be able to overtake the Italian team in the standings in double quick time.

Loser: The fans' wallets

When making a rendezvous at Silverstone, fans should expect questionable weather and long waiting times to get in and out of the circuit after each day of action.

But despite its vast experience of hosting events, Silverstone got firmly stuck in the mud over the weekend. Fans remained in the car park for over two hours after the on-track action ended.

Saturday was even worse, with flooded walkways and excruciatingly long traffic jams making the fan experience even more miserable.

Although 480,000 fans visited the circuit over the weekend, rising ticket prices remained a hot topic in the runup to the British GP. The circuit's managing director, Stuart Pringle, blamed Red Bull's dominance for the race not selling out, a claim Verstappen scoffed at.

Silverstone has made great strides in recent years to make the British GP more than just an event, but the improved off-track entertainment has come at a price. Since 2019, ticket prices for Silverstone have increased by 12%, and the circuit's usage of dynamic pricing, where the latter can change from the moment they are put on sale, is not helping.

Is it worth paying over £429 ($550) for the weekend to sit in traffic for an hour and then deal with waterlogged car parks and fan areas upon arrival? Unless their loyalties lie with Silverstone, some punters may save themselves time and money by venturing to a race in mainland Europe for 2025.
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