Ferrari ace Fernando Alonso won the British Grand Prix F1 race at Silverstone Sunday sending the tifosi back in Italy into a frenzy and he did so by a comfortably 16 seconds over the two Red Bull cars of points leader Sebastian Vettel and Mark Webber.
On a track that was wet at the start, partially dried, was wet again and then dried again, Alonso drove a masterful race and in the middle and closing laps was clearly the fastest car on the track.
Lewis Hamilton, fading at the end to save fuel, was 4th after a side-by-side battle to the line with Felipe Massa who finished 5th.
The win is Alonso's 27th career victory – tying Jackie Stewart on the all-time wins list.
Nico Rosberg in the Mercedes GP was sixth, Sergio Perez in the Sauber-Ferrari was seventh, Nick Heidfeld in the Renault was eighth, Michael Schumacher in the Mercedes GP was ninth, and Jaime Alguersuari in the Toro Rosso-Ferrari finished in the final points paying position.
"Obviously it is a huge boost for us," said Alonso. "We were confident of being quick here at Silverstone. “No doubts it was a race that had one red cross because it was not an easy grand prix for us; the characteristics of the corners, and the layout were never our strongest points.
"We knew that Silverstone, like Barcelona, was difficult for us, so winning here is a good motivation for everyone and gives us confidence approaching the next few races."
"We will try to enjoy the moment, the win and work hard. We will have the same approach as we had in Malaysia and we had in Canada and here as well. It is a weekend to try to go for the victory, to try to go for the race. There are not championship thoughts at the moment because the gap is massive to Seb. We need to enjoy every weekend, and there is no time to think about anything."
Sebastian Vettel has admitted that Ferrari outraced Red Bull ‘fair and square’ during the British Grand Prix on Sunday afternoon, with the championship leader having to settle for second place. The German was hindered by a slow pit-stop on Lap 27, allowing Fernando Alonso to take the lead and claim a commanding victory.
"It’s hard to say how much we lost, but surely we lost the lead," Vettel said when talking about his sluggish pit-stop. "I think we had quite a bit of a cushion at that stage, so it didn’t help. I came out behind Fernando and Lewis, I struggled to get past.
"There were some places where it was quite close with him, but it didn’t quite work so we went in for the stop and obviously had a longer stint at the end. All in all, I think we had a very good race, it was really difficult in these conditions. I had a brilliant start and I was able to pull away quite well at the beginning of the race on Intermediate tires.
"Then we waited a little bit and we weren’t very aggressive which cost us a bit of our lead, plus the pit-stop. So there were little mistakes here and there, but you cannot get it right all the time and I think we have to accept that Ferrari beat us fair and square.
"Not only this race, but there has been a certain trend over the last couple of races, they (Ferrari) have been very strong on race day and generally improving their car. It shows us that we need to keep on working very hard and pushing very hard, so that soon it is the other way around again."
“I had an excellent start and with hindsight I wouldn’t have minded if there had been more rain because I really liked the conditions when we were racing on the intermediate tires. We seemed to be in very good shape and I was pulling away. We probably waited a little bit too long to go onto the dry tires, but it was right as there was no need for us to take a risk and we were in control. At the pit stop we had a problem – the car was already back on the floor, but then we had to lift it back up again. By then I had lost the lead and came out in third.
"I struggled to pass Lewis, I thought I could go much quicker, but I never really had the chance. Once I was very close, but it didn’t work. We got him at the pit stop, but by then Fernando was already gone. It was a good result for us, but we had some problems and, if you’re not at your optimum, then there’s always someone there to beat you. Ferrari was very quick all weekend and they deserved the victory today."
Sebastian Vettel (2nd): "I had an excellent start and with hindsight I wouldn't have minded if there had been more rain because I really liked the conditions when we were racing on the intermediate tires. We seemed to be in very good shape and I was pulling away. We probably waited a little bit too long to go onto the dry tires, but it was right as there was no need for us to take a risk and we were in control. At the pit stop we had a problem – the car was already back on the floor, but then we had to lift it back up again. By then I had lost the lead and came out in third. I struggled to pass Lewis, I thought I could go much quicker, but I never really had the chance. Once I was very close, but it didn't work. We got him at the pit stop, but by then Fernando was already gone. It was a good result for us, but we had some problems and, if you're not at your optimum, then there's always someone there to beat you. Ferrari was very quick all weekend and they deserved the victory today."
Mark Webber (3rd): "It was a mixed race, it was very slippery at the start with the intermediate tires, half the track was dry and half was wet and we had to wait for the slicks to come into play. Michael pitted first and we were waiting to hear what his pace was like. On my in-lap I had a massive moment in Becketts, so Fernando closed on me a bit, I went across the grass, so it was a bit scrappy there – then we had an interesting race after that. I felt strong at the start of each stint, but less so towards the end of the stints – both Seb and I were having trouble with the tires at the end of the race. I tried to pass him, but not quite, and that was the race."
Christian Horner, Sporting Director: "After a very interesting race that initially started very well for us on the intermediate tires, second and third is still a very strong result at this circuit, considering everything that has gone on this weekend. Unfortunately we had a rear jack failure on Sebastian's second pit stop, which cost him a lot of time in the pits and dropped him behind Fernando. Having said that, Fernando was very fast today, but at least we would have had the track position going into the latter stint. Having run second early on, Mark had an issue at his second pit stop, but he managed to re-pass Hamilton with a brave move into Turn six. In the closing laps and with the two cars going wheel to wheel, from a team point of view it made absolute sense to consolidate a big haul of points today and not risk having both cars in the fence, which nearly happened to Lewis and Felipe on the last corner. From a team point of view it's been a very strong day – we gained 33 points and both drivers are now first and second in the Drivers' Championship. On the exhaust issue, hopefully we have now achieved clarity on this and can draw a line under it going forward."
Cyril Dumont, Renault: "All in all, it's a pretty good result today. I would have loved for us to have finished first and second, but for the Constructors' Championship, it was a good team result. Unfortunately we had a rear jack failure, which cost Sebastian some time, but I think we are in a good position and we will be ready for the German GP in two weeks time."
Lewis Hamilton (4th): "Before the end, I had to start saving fuel: you have to lift and coast, which means the brake temperatures drop. So I had no brakes, and that's why I kept locking up. That allowed Mark [Webber] to slip ahead of me and meant I was defending from Felipe [Massa] in the closing laps. On the final lap, the team gave me the order to push as hard as I could, but Felipe had already closed the gap by that point, so it was difficult to defend. That last lap was as close as it's ever going to get! In the final corner I stayed on the inside and braked as hard as I could. Fortunately, we both got around the corner in one piece and I just pipped him at the finish. The support I had when I crossed the line was as if I'd won the race – so I want to say a huge thank-you to everyone. In fact, the fans have been amazing all weekend: I've never seen so many people at Silverstone, and I could feel them all spurring me on. I think this was one of the best British Grands Prix of all time, and I'm already looking forward to coming back again next year!"
Jenson Button (DNF, Wheel nut): "So much could have happened in my race today. Before my final stop I'd had great pace, and I'd caught Lewis, Sebastian [Vettel] and Mark. When they peeled off into the pits, I stayed out for one more lap and I think I would have come out alongside, or even ahead of, Mark after the stop. But, as I turned out of the pitlane, my right-front wheel came off and I was forced to stop immediately. The guy on the front-right lost the wheel nut and turned to take another; as he turned, I think his hand moved and the guy on the front jack felt that that was the trigger to lower the car. Then the lollipop lifted. Hopefully, we won't have that sort of issue again. It's disappointing – especially in front of the home crowd – because I was really enjoying the race. I'd had good pace all afternoon and really enjoyed a couple of good battles – particularly passing Felipe on the inside into Vale. I think we gave the fans something to cheer, although it was a shame we couldn't have scored more world championship points: anyone who had pace at the end of the race had a good chance, and I think there was definitely a podium to be had here today."
Martin Whitmarsh, Team Principal: "Our race pace was good today – but, even so, it was a difficult afternoon for us and ultimately therefore a disappointing result for the team and for all British race fans. Jenson drove an excellent race – combative yet disciplined – and I think he could well have bagged a podium finish had it not been for the pitstop mix-up that prematurely ended his race. Our pit crew has done a fantastic job all year – but on this occasion they released Jenson before his right-front wheel had been properly attached. It was a case of human error in the heat of the moment – but, as I say, and as I want to stress the point, our pit crew has completed dozens of faultless pitstops under extreme pressure this season and today's error was therefore totally atypical. Lewis, too, delivered a very strong performance. We'd expected him to encounter more traffic in the first part of the race than he actually did – and, as a result, he used more fuel early on than we'd anticipated he would. That being the case, we had to ask him to drive with fuel conservation in mind in the final laps – which meant that he was forced to slow his pace and thereby allow Mark to pass and let Felipe catch up. The last lap of the race must have made for wonderful viewing for trackside spectators and TV audiences alike – and the fact that Lewis was able to cling on to fourth place ahead of Felipe, and score 12 valuable world championship points as a result, is I think a testament to his indefatigable competitiveness. The Santander British Grand Prix was a superb event – the grandstands were jam-packed and I'm glad to say that a large proportion of the fans who filled them were wearing rocket-red Vodafone McLaren Mercedes caps – but now we must turn our attention to another historic motorsport venue, the Nurburgring, which will this year host the German Grand Prix, the home race of our engine partner Mercedes-Benz HighPerformanceEngines. As ever, Mercedes-Benz HighPerformanceEngines has done a fantastic job this year – and, together, we intend to be fully competitive in Germany in two weeks' time."
Fernando Alonso (1st): "What a wonderful surprise! The team did an amazing job and I dedicate this win to everyone at Maranello and at the track, whose work has allowed me and Felipe to drive such a good car. It is a very special win because it comes at a legendary track like Silverstone, in front of a crowd that is so enthusiastic about cars. Also, the track characteristics were not really suited to our car, but clearly, the improvements we brought here helped a lot. At the start, it was not easy to drive because parts of the circuit were very wet and others were only damp in parts. There were some tricky moments, like when Hamilton overtook me, but we stayed very calm all the time, convinced we could get something out of it. I only realized I could win when I came back out on track after the final pit stop. Clearly the problem at Vettel's stop helped, as did the fact that, for a long time, Hamilton kept the two Red Bulls behind him, but I have to say that in the dry we were very strong. Earlier today, I had the privilege to drive the 375 F1 and then, a few hours later, to win the same race for Ferrari sixty years later. In our team, there are children of people who worked for the Scuderia back then and they have the same love and passion for racing as there was back then. We head for Germany with our morale up and with more self confidence. The Red Bull is still the strongest car, but the improvements we are introducing are working. When we were struggling at the start of the season, we did not get downhearted, but instead we reacted: now we have reaped the rewards."
Felipe Massa (5th): "First of all, I want to congratulate Fernando, who drove a great race to give Ferrari a very important win. Sixty years ago, Gonzalez won for the first time and today history has repeated itself. I think we have made a step forward this weekend in terms of performance, both in qualifying and the race. It's true my pace wasn't amazing today, but that could have had something to do with the fact my floor was damaged, after I hit something at Turn 6; maybe a part from another car. In terms of the strategy, maybe we could brought forward the second stop a bit, but the team did not want me to end up having to complete the final part of the race on tires that were too worn. In the end, I closed right up to Hamilton, as he was struggling, but when I was behind him, he fought and I only just missed out by a fraction on getting past him. We have to continue to push on the development of the car: there are many races still ahead of us and having improved the car means we can feel more confident about the second half of the season."
Luca di Montezemolo: "At last! Hearing the Italian National Anthem being played at Silverstone, the same venue at which we won our first ever Formula 1 race, was something I found particularly emotional. This is Ferrari, a team that never stops fighting, never throws in the towel, at the top level for sixty years. I want to thank Domenicali and the whole team, both those at the track, who did a perfect job today and those at home, whom I'd asked to put in a huge effort, not just for us but also for our fans. Fernando was brilliant, driving an extraordinary race and Felipe also did very well, fighting right to the very end."
Stefano Domenicali, Team Principal: "Today is a wonderful day for all of Ferrari. Winning at such a famous circuit as Silverstone, with its rich and fascinating history, in front of an extraordinary crowd, is cause for great satisfaction. This result has been a long time coming but it's definitely not down to any miracles. We reacted after a very difficult start to the season, working very hard with much determination, all of us, including those who no longer work with us. We were competitive all weekend long and in all conditions: it confirms that everything went the right way. Congratulations to Fernando who delivered an extraordinary performance throughout the weekend and to Felipe, who fought tooth and nail right to the very last lap. The engineers say that if you are quick at this track then you can be competitive at many of the tracks on which we have yet to race. I hope that's really the case then! We don't want to do any calculations regarding the championship. We must tackle each race as it comes with this same approach, without letup. This evening we can enjoy the moment, but as from tomorrow morning, we will turn our attention to the German Grand Prix."
Pat Fry: "It's very satisfying to get the first win of the season here, on a track that definitely did not suit us that well. Putting to one side the entire saga regarding exhaust gases, I think our performance today was mainly down to seeing the benefit of the improvements we have introduced race after race, especially here, where we had so many updates aimed at increasing performance on tracks that have these characteristics. For that, I want to thank everyone who has worked so hard in Maranello over the past weeks to close the gap that was there at the start of the season. We were not particularly quick on the intermediates, but probably Fernando wanted to avoid pushing too hard in the opening laps in order to look after the tires. We also had a few difficulties when we switched to the dry tires because, as the track was still damp, they did not get up to temperature immediately, but after that our pace was very good. Again today our pit stops were very good and even this is an area where we introduced improvements that delivered results. Maybe we didn't get the calls quite right when it came to Felipe's strategy, leaving him out on track a few laps too long. Now we must continue working this way and turn up in Germany with a car that is even quicker."
Nico Rosberg (6th): "I'm pretty pleased with our result this weekend. First of all because in qualifying we had the potential to be in the top five, and secondly we had a really good strategy in the race. My start was not good, so being able to eventually finish in sixth place is a nice result for us. And hopefully it's the start of an upward trend, before our next home race in Germany, so I'm looking forward to confirming our performance at the Nurburgring. In the next few days, we will analyze the whole weekend with our new developments on the car, and will work hard on improving it even further."
Michael Schumacher (9th): "My result today is a bit of a shame, and of course I am not happy about it. I think fifth or even fourth place would not have been out of question today thanks to the superb job the guys back in Brackley and Brixworth have done. I would so much have wished to bring them some decent points this evening when we go back to the factory for a BBQ with their families. But unfortunately, and due to my fault, I cannot. Having used DRS for the first time in the race, I was arriving at the corner with over-run. Underestimating the effect, my braking was not good and this is how the collision happened. It was right to get a penalty but why it had to be a stop-go, and not a drive-through penalty, I would like to understand better as I felt it was too hard. Anyway, the good thing is that step-by-step, the hard work of our team is paying off more and more, and this is a good feeling heading towards our next home race."
Ross Brawn, Team Principal: "This was a solid result for the team and a decent haul of points: after starting ninth and 13th respectively, Nico and Michael made good progress up the field. They had mixed fortunes at the start – Michael gained four positions, while Nico dropped three places as he lost out in the first few corners. Michael's race was obviously spoiled by his collision and it carried a double penalty, as he did a slow lap to the pits and then had the stop-go penalty. However, after that he drove very well and climbed back from as low as 17th to score two points. Nico's race was more straightforward, but we set him a real challenge asking him to go the end of the race from lap 30, and he did an extremely solid job to achieve that. This was the first race for this car specification, with new exhaust outlets and aerodynamic developments, and we had only an hour of dry running, mainly with one car, before qualifying. With that in mind, we can be encouraged by our performance today. One of our previous difficulties had been making the tires last properly, but both drivers managed to run over 115km on a set of options this afternoon, which suggests we have made some good progress in this area."
Norbert Haug, Mercedes Motorsport Director: "The start of the race in partly damp conditions did not quite develop according to plan. Nico lost three places on lap one whereas Michael gained four. Taking into consideration that Nico completed the first lap in 12th, sixth place is a respectable result. We showed today that we could handle the tires during a two-stop strategy, when most of the top ten finishers chose three stops. Michael had an eventful race, touching Kobayashi's Sauber in the early stages, which forced him into the pits early for a nose change, and some laps later, a stop-go penalty. He then dropped back to 17th, so his recovery to ninth place was impressive. Well done to our team at one of our home races. We all will work very hard to further improve our package for our next home race at the Nurburgring in a fortnight."
Nick Heidfeld (8th): "We saw on Saturday that this would be a tough weekend but as usual I said 'never give up.' I had a good start, but the first few corners were incredibly tight and I was happy to get through them without any damage to the car. The big question for the race was when to change from the intermediates to the slicks and we were one of the first to do this. It was a good call, however we didn't get as much of an advantage as you can sometimes get from timing your stop well. After that it was an interesting race for me as I had to look after my tires and at the same time I had to attack and also defend at different times, particularly with Michael and Adrian. Finding the balance between attacking, fighting and not killing the tires was not only very satisfying, but it also worked out well for us with four valuable points."
Vitaly Petrov (12th): "It was not a difficult drive today, however I found it tough running with the intermediate tires. I lost some positions and was unable to protect myself because the traction was very poor and other cars were able to pass me like I was not there. The DRS section was not helpful at all; they should change its position on the track because it just wasn't possible for me to overtake here at Silverstone. I was very close to Adrian (Sutil) but just could not get past, so that was a big frustration. Even on the back straight, there was not enough KERS to overtake so it would be better to put DRS there. My speed was not too bad, I was quite quick but I felt helpless out there."
Eric Boullier, Team Principal: "Firstly, it was good for Nick to recover from 16th on the grid to 8th position when he crossed the line, so the general feeling with his drive was quite positive because we had the right strategy with him. There is, however, a general sense of disappointment from this weekend because we did not have a good qualifying; we had our worst qualifying of the season here. This weekend we have not been able to reverse a poor period we are currently going through and we will continue to work hard to rectify this. We have some good developments coming, which unfortunately were not available for Silverstone but will be ready when we reach Nurburgring. These will take our performance forward, of that I am convinced."
James Allison, Technical Director: "We'll accept eighth place having started from 16th, however, it's not where we want to finish. Nick drove a strong race to get this result with a car that is clearly off the pace at the moment. It was also a good drive from Vitaly to finish 12th. We were in trouble on the intermediate tires and everyone could see it. Once we were on slicks we made inroads into the other cars and although the pace was poor, it was better relative to the opposition than it had been in qualifying. We scored four points after what has been a disappointing weekend. We can now put this performance behind us, having not lost too much ground to the teams around us. Our focus is now on the succession of upgrades that will be implemented to the car from Nurburgring onwards. This should bring us back up where we ought to be."
Riccardo Penteado, Engine Support Leader: "Not a bad race considering our starting positions. Nick made a great start from 16th, which really put him back in the race. The conditions were also pretty difficult and keeping track of the changing levels of grip was tricky, so 8th at the end is a good result. Vitaly only finished 1.5 seconds away from the points after a very strong start. Unfortunately he didn't manage to keep his position after his first lap battle. It's been a hard weekend but from the engine side everything worked very well and we now need to look to the Nurburgring where hopefully we can put a strong weekend performance together."
Rubens Barrichello (13th): "We didn't have the best of starts and fell back quite a bit. Strangely, the car didn't feel good in the wet and it was a struggle to keep it on the track. It was also difficult to keep up with the guys in front of us. We had hoped for a better result at our home Grand Prix."
Pastor Maldonado (14th): "It was quite difficult for us today especially with the light rain shortly before the start. Our car set-up was geared towards a dry race so we were compromised from the outset. Towards the end, our performance was better but by that stage it was too late. Unfortunately it wasn't the best weekend for us."
Sam Michael, Technical Director: "Our pace on the intermediate tire wasn't good enough today. Compared to some of the guys in the top ten, our lap times on the dry tire were respectable, but we just lost too much time in the opening laps to be able to make up any ground. We ran different strategies on the two cars to attempt to do something different to recover but it wasn't meant to be today. Pastor suffered some damage to his front wing and came home 14th, Rubens one place higher in P13."
Adrian Sutil (11th): "After such a promising start to the race it's disappointing to come away empty-handed. My start was okay and things looked good in the first few laps. The conditions were tricky, with a lot of damp areas in the second sector, but I felt quite confident and was able to run in the points. I think we made the right decision with the strategy to stop three times, but in the end I don't think we had the pace to hold on for points today."
Paul di Resta (15th): "It's extremely disappointing to end my first British Grand Prix in P15. I had a good first part of the race; we seemed quite competitive and I was able to hold on to Jenson [Button] as I concentrated on looking after my intermediate tires. I think we made the switch to dry tires at the right moment and we were running well. Then I got a call to come into the pits again, but when I got there the team were expecting Adrian, so there was obviously some confusion. It cost me quite a lot of time because the boys had to run back in the garage and fetch my tires. That cost us about 25 seconds, which pretty much ended my chances. So it's a frustrating race, but I think we should stay positive because the car has shown well this weekend and that gives me confidence going into the second part of the season."
Dr. Vijay Mallya, Team Principal: "Today simply was not our day. Despite the promise we showed yesterday, the events of the race compromised our strategies and made it very difficult to score points. To begin with things looked very good. Both Paul and Adrian were running strongly in the points and the car continued to perform well. Unfortunately things started to go wrong when we made a serious error on the pit wall. We called Paul in for his second scheduled stop, but at the same time Adrian came on the radio reporting a puncture. We tried to get Paul to stay out so that we could service Adrian's car, but it was too late and Paul was already in the pit lane. That led to some confusion over the tires being ready for Paul when he arrived at the garage and cost him a great deal of time. As for Adrian, he drove well, but lost out to the two-stoppers in the closing laps. It's clear we need to regroup and come back stronger in Germany so that we can convert the pace of the car into points."
Sergio Perez (7th): "I think it was a good race and a very good result for the team. In the beginning the conditions were quite difficult, but we managed to stay out of trouble. The strategy was good and my pit stops were perfect. Unfortunately I couldn't overtake Nico (Rosberg). I was very close but he was too fast on the straights. Overall I am happy and now the difficult times are behind me. After the accident it took me time to get back into the rhythm of the season, and find the momentum I had before it. In two weeks' time I shall be even stronger."
Kamui Kobayashi (DNF, Oil leak): "It is a real shame because our overall performance was good this weekend. In today's race I was very unlucky. I think there is not a lot for me to say about the accident with Michael (Schumacher). We were not side by side, and he obviously hit the rear of my car. From then on I had to drive with a damaged car. Then I had bad luck with the pit stop, was given the stop and go penalty, and finally had to stop because I was told on the radio there was an oil leak and I should pull off the track."
Peter Sauber, Team Principal: "I am very happy with Sergio's seventh place, so congratulations to him. It was a difficult race for him, as for almost the whole distance he had to follow Nico Rosberg. He had more speed, but it was not enough to overtake. As for Kamui's race, the incident with Michael Schumacher was quite annoying. It was an unnecessary collision that cost Kamui his chances of a good finish."
James Key, Technical Director: "It has been a decent result for us today. I think Sergio did a great job of controlling a race which was tricky in many ways with the adverse conditions to begin with, and then just a single tire change onto the dry tires. He was battling with Nico Rosberg for pretty much the whole race, sadly be couldn't get through. His start wasn't great, so he dropped back a bit, but he hauled that back with his pace and the strategy, which was a good effort by the whole team. It was a great shame for Kamui, as he was looking competitive, but then he had a coming together with a Mercedes. Then during his stop we had a problem which resulted in him being released later than originally planned and unfortunately there was an unintentional clash with a Williams. That took a huge amount of downforce away from his front wing and he was then unfortunately quite slow. Then he had a ten second drive through penalty and an engine oil issue, possibly due to the impact he had with the Mercedes, so we decided to retire him and not damage the engine. At the end of the day we have come away from a long weekend with points so thank you to the team."
Jaime Alguersuari (10th): "In the early stages, all I was concentrating on was staying on the track, as it was very slippery and I wanted to make no mistakes and get to the finish. I was definitely faster than Heidfeld and Schumacher, around most of the lap, as was the case in Valencia. But we could not make the most of this as I then lost out to them going down the straight. I'm not sure why that was the case, maybe we ran with a bit more downforce than them. However, I am happy for the team, who I thank for doing a good job, as getting back into the points from eighteenth on the grid was a good result after we failed to make the most of the Soft tire in qualifying."
Sebastien Buemi (DNF, Damage): "I'm a bit disappointed as I feel we could have picked up some points today. I was running at a good pace. I would like to see the footage with Di Resta again to see exactly what happened, but from the cockpit, I was on the dry line, he tried to come up the inside of me where the track surface was still very wet. So he could not brake as hard as if he had been on the dry and I felt an impact. He had touched my left rear tire which shredded it. But that's racing, so it's best to forget it and start thinking about the next race at the Nurburgring."
Franz Tost, Team Principal: "Another exciting race in general and also for Scuderia Toro Rosso in particular, because yet again we finished in the points, the sixth time from nine races this season and the fourth time in a row. It was also another good performance from Jaime. He had a fantastic race, building on a good start. In the final stages he caught up to Schumacher and came close to passing him on the last lap. Unfortunately, Sebastien's race ended after a collision with Di Resta, which in my opinion was quite clearly the fault of the Force India driver, as he came up the inside and did not stop, destroying Buemi's left rear tire, which meant he had to retire at the side of the track. In race conditions, the STR 6 seems to work very well as it produced some excellent lap times. Overall the team did a good job, including the choice of strategies and we were competitive throughout the afternoon. All these positive factors mean we can look forward to the next round at the Nurburgring with confidence."
Jarno Trulli (DNF, Oil leak): "I had a decent start and was getting set to pass Timo but then had the call to stop the car to prevent any damage to the engine because of an oil leak. It's obviously not how we wanted the race to go but our reliability record has improved dramatically this season and this is just one of those blips. I'm sure we'll bounce back at the Nurburgring where we may well have similar weather conditions, so we'll move on and make sure we learn the lessons from this weekend."
Heikki Kovalainen (DNF, Gearbox): "What a shame! I had a really good start but then lost fourth gear and had to retire the car. The conditions out there were exactly what they should be for real drivers – a mix of two types of circuit, one wet, one dry, exactly what I love racing in and the type of race we could have taken advantage of. But these things happen so we'll move on to Germany and keep on pushing."
Tony Fernandes, Team Principal: "That is such a shame. This weekend held huge promise for us after we had performed well on Friday, and especially well on Saturday, and in conditions like these we know both our drivers have the talent and experience to take whatever opportunities present themselves. We have worked very hard on improving the reliability of the cars throughout the season but you can never account for everything that might happen and unfortunately this just turned out to be one of those races that we have to move on from. Despite that, the whole weekend has been very encouraging, particularly for me seeing the huge support we have in the stands where there is a growing legion of fans wearing green and yellow, so now we will do our best to give them something to cheer for in Germany and Hungary before we head into the summer break."
Mike Gascoyne, Technical Director: "That is obviously a disappointing end to what had been a very encouraging weekend for the team. It looks like Heikki suffered an electrical problem on his gearbox which caused him to lose fourth gear so we had to pull him in and retire him. It was definitely not a problem with the gearbox itself so we need to take a close look at what went wrong on our side and make sure it does not happen again. On Jarno's car we instructed him to stop as he had an oil leak and lost pressure so we had to end his race early to ensure we did not damage the engine. Sometimes races end like this but we have been working very hard to minimize these sorts of problems, so we will regroup and come back stronger in Germany at the next race."
Thierry Salvi, Renault: "After the excellent result we had in qualifying yesterday we were unfortunately unable translate that into a result today because of the mechanical issues we had on both cars. We were not lucky today and that meant it was a short race for us on both sides of the garage. However, I am sure we will find a solution for the problems and make sure we get both cars across the finish line at the next race."
Vitantonio Liuzzi (18th): "It was a difficult race, but we knew this since Friday as we've had a lot of problems. It was a tricky one from the beginning because of the tires. Tire choice wasn't easy, we went with intermediates because the track was wet at the beginning but this made everything more interesting. We had a good start with good pace, we were able to catch and fight our nearest rival which is what we wanted to achieve in this race because we knew we didn't have the pace to beat them. But we competed until the last lap and now we have to work hard for the Nurburgring."
Daniel Ricciardo (19th): "I feel quite good to finish and see the checkered flag. It was nice to get the laps, which I think was the most important thing for me today for experience. Understanding the tires, the pit stops and the strategy, it's really very complex and something I've never really done before, so in this respect I think it was a step forward. I was quite a bit off the other competitors but I think that, as I learn, I will get a bit closer. I also need to try and manage the blue flags a bit better, it's not easy. At the end, looking at it now, I'm quite pleased with the result. Wednesday was a big introduction to Formula 1, meeting the team and making the seat, it was never going to be easy or perfect but to finish the race is a good result for us. My expectations for the next race are to learn and move forward, to be a bit closer to Tonio in qualifying and to try and close the gap in the race, I think that is a good target for now."
Colin Kolles, Team Principal: "The race for us was quite good because we had a good strategy and did good pit stops. Obviously our cars are not as quick as other cars; this is a little bit unfortunate. Otherwise we could show that we would've been much more competitive. The target was to finish the race with both cars, which we did, and both drivers could do some good lap times. Daniel was struggling a little bit with the rear tires towards the end and therefore lost a little bit of ground on Tonio and the others. But, all in all, it was quite positive with no major dramas. Daniel did his laps and finished the race, his quickest lap time was quite a good one and the problem was that he was struggling with the tires. He has to get used to the tires obviously, this isn't too easy when you've started just one race with new tires and the others have already thousands of kilometers under their belts. This circuit was definitely not good for our car, there were difficult weather conditions, then there was the exhaust discussion which was not in our favor because we have a little bit of a different exhaust, so, all in all, this did not help but, in the end, it was positive because the team worked well and that is important."
Timo Glock (16th): "A good race for us today and a good result for the team in getting both cars to the finish in our home Grand Prix. It was quite a normal race for us I would say. I got a good start and a good first lap. The first couple of corners were a bit of a mess but when everything started to settle down I was in front of Jarno and could hold my pace okay to stay in front of him. After they were out of the race I had a relatively easy time. It wasn't possible to gain places so I didn't push too hard; I just concentrated on achieving our objective today which was another two-car finish. I'm happy for us and hope for more of the same in my home race in Germany in two weeks' time."
Jerome d'Ambrosio (17th): "It was very difficult at the beginning when it was wet and I lost quite a bit of time there. Then in the second stint it was ok. I had a good fight with Tonio and managed to overtake him. The last stint was very difficult, after a couple of laps I had no grip on the front left tire so I couldn't attack much and I just had to back off all the time and just make sure I could last until the end of the race. I was quite worried I might have to come back into the pits again but I managed to keep going and get to the end."
John Booth, Team Principal: "A good finish to the team's home race weekend, not only with both cars finishing but also a clear positive in terms of an improvement in pace. Timo managed the 17th fastest lap in the race and Jerome pulled off a good overtaking move on Liuzzi in Copse, so both drivers are leaving the track on a positive note. The engineers coped well with the decision that had to be taken on the grid with the tires and determined a good strategy. This was all helped with some good pit-stop work by the mechanics, including some late calls and coping well with both drivers stopping on the same lap. We've got a busy week ahead before the next race in Germany, with an aero test at RAF Cottesmore and also further rig tests. We are all looking forward to maintaining our current form at Timo's home race."
|2.||Sebastian Vettel||Red Bull-Renault||+16.511|
|3.||Mark Webber||Red Bull-Renault||+16.947|
|10.||Jamie Alguersuari||Toro Rosso-Ferrari||+1:19.108|
|11.||Adrian Sutil||Force India-Mercedes||+1:19.712|
|13.||Rubens Barrichello||Williams-Cosworth||+1 lap|
|15.||Di Resta||Force India-Mercedes||+1 lap|
|16.||Timo Glock||Virgin-Cosworth||+2 laps|
|18.||Vitantonio Liuzzi||HRT-Cosworth||+2 laps|
|19.||Daniel Ricciardo||HRT-Cosworth||+3 laps|
|20.||Jenson Button||McLaren-Mercedes||DNF Lap 11|
|21.||Sebastian Buemi||Toro Rosso-Ferrari||DNF Lap 26|
|22.||Kobayashi||Sauber-Ferrari||DNF Lap 28|
|23.||Jarno Trulli||Lotus-Renault||DNF Lap 41|
|24.||Heikki Kovalainen||Lotus-Renault||DNF Lap 49|
Fastest lap: Alonso, 1:34.908