Red Bull’s Sebastian Vettel finally won his home race with a thrilling victory in the German Grand Prix that saw battles take place all the way to the chequered flag.
Kimi Raikkonen, who has not won a race since the start of the season in Australia, pushed Vettel all the way before crossing the line second while Lotus team-mate Romain Grosjean claimed his second podium of the season with third.
Fernando Alonso once again demonstrated his Ferrari’s pace in the race to rise up the field and limit his losses in the drivers’ standings to championship leader Vettel.
And McLaren’s Jenson Button had one of his strongest drives of the season with sixth – but who was your Driver of the Day?
Held off a charging Raikkonen in the closing stages to win his fourth race of the season. Made an excellent getaway from second to pass pole-sitter Lewis Hamilton and lead the race into the first corner. Absorbed the pressure from Red Bull team-mate Mark Webber who gave chase. Gradually built up a small lead but saw it neutralised by the safety car. Pitted just after Grosjean to cover the Frenchman and then retook the lead when Raikkonen pitted for the final time. Suffered a loss of Kers briefly so had to push in closing stages but did enough to take his first win on home soil and first in July to extend his championship lead.
Pitted from the lead late on but didn’t quite have enough laps to catch and pass Vettel. Made a clean getaway from fourth, but couldn’t find a way past a slow-starting Hamilton. Showed consistent pace and pulled off some impressive overtaking moves after his first stop, passing Hamilton and Rosberg around the outside at the final chicane. Moved up to third which became second and then first when Vettel and Grosjean pitted. Decided to pit late on for soft tyres and though he caught Vettel, didn’t have enough laps to steal the win. Scored his fifth top two-finish in nine races.
Scored his second podium of the season with one of his most consistent drives. Got away cleanly at the start from fifth and found himself in the lead when he managed to go deeper into the race than anyone else on the soft tyres. That pulled him into contention for the race win. Pitted and then chased Vettel in the middle part of the race, but couldn’t find a way past. Lost a place to team-mate Raikkonen who was faster in the closing stages. Finished third to move up to eighth in the drivers’ championship.
Just missed out on the podium but drove another strong race to limit championship losses. Started eighth, after the team decided to qualify on the more durable medium tyre rather than the faster soft tyre, and struggled to make much progress early on. Made up places as his team-mate Felipe Massa retired and then those who started on softs started to pit. Ran as high as second when he pitted. Had a great battle with Hamilton, moving up to fourth. Pitted for soft tyres at the end which allowed him to close on the top three, but ran out of laps to pass Grosjean.
Tried a different strategy and showed improved pace to finish sixth. Started ninth on the medium tyres and was able to go quite deep into the race, running as high as second. Dropped back down the field when he pitted, but put a good move on team-mate Sergio Perez to move up to fifth. Lost a place to Hamilton in the closing stages as he got held up badly by traffic to finish sixth, which equals his second best result of the season.
So who was your Driver of the Day? Leave a comment at the bottom of this story.