• Hungarian Grand Prix

Webber takes advantage to win in Hungary

ESPNF1 Staff
August 1, 2010

Mark Webber made the most of his Red Bull team-mate's misfortune to win the Hungarian Grand Prix from Fernando Alonso and Sebastian Vettel.

Vettel looked set for victory until he was hit with a drive-through penalty for leaving a gap larger than ten car lengths to Webber during a mid-race safety car period. Webber took full advantage, dialling in a series of fastest laps to pull out enough of a lead after his stop to hold his advantage to the finish. Vettel, unable to find a way past the slower Ferrari of Alonso, had to settle for third.

The result means that Webber now leads the drivers' standings from Lewis Hamilton after the McLaren retired on lap 24 with transmission problems.

Alonso did as he promised by splitting the Red Bulls at the start, the fast-accelerating Ferrari getting the jump on Webber into the first corner and very nearly sneaking past Vettel as well. Having defended his inside line, Vettel sailed off into the distance, pulling out a big 2.5 second gap in just one lap. Behind him, Alonso held position and Vettel could find no way past around the tight confines of the Hungaroring.

Jenson Button was the big loser on the first lap, sipping back to 15th from his starting position of 11th. McLaren team-mate Lewis Hamilton also lost out to Vitaly Petrov's Renault but resumed his place soon after. After his qualifying woes, Kamui Kobayashi was the star starter of the field, jumping up to 16th from 23rd.

Lap 15 saw the first of the stops for the front runners as the safety car came out with debris on the circuit. McLaren read the situation perfectly and pitted Button immediately, gaining him five places once everyone else had stopped. The crew also did a good job for Hamilton, changing his tyres quicker than Ferrari change Massa's and getting their man out in front. The efforts turned out to be in vain as within 10 laps Hamilton had pulled to the side of the circuit with a broken driveshaft.

Mayhem further down the pit lane saw Robert Kubica pull out into the Force India of Adrian Sutil while Nico Rosberg's wheel rolled off due to a loose nut. Kubica was given a stop-go penalty and both teams were fined $50,000 after the race for their parts in the incidents.

Webber chose not to stop in the hope of getting past Alonso by staying out on track and building up a big lead before coming in for tyres. The tactics worked perfectly and also gave him a surprise victory when the news broke that Vettel had not stayed close enough to him at the restart.

Once Vettel had served his penalty he came out behind Alonso and spent the rest of the race within a second of the Ferrari's gearbox but unable to find a way past. The hot and tormented air coming from the back of the F10 put up an invisible barrier for Vettel, whose aerodynamics refused to work in Alonso's wake.

Further down the field there was an even fiercer battle emerging between ex-Ferrari team-mates Michael Schumacher and Rubens Barrichello. The Williams driver was on a newer and softer set of tyres and had a much faster car. He eventually got alongside the Mercedes but Schumacher pushed him to the right and within inches of the concrete pit wall. Barrichello secured the position into turn one and the final point on offer but over the radio said that he felt Schumacher should be disqualified for his actions. Race stewards later handed Schumacher a ten place grid demotion for the Belgian Grand Prix.

At the back of the field and three laps down, all of the new teams secured two-car finishes. Lotus led the way with Heikki Kovalainen finishing 14th, crossing the line ahead of team-mate Jarno Trulli by just 0.8 seconds. Timo Glock and Bruno Senna were 16th and 17th ahead of Lucas di Grassi and Sakon Yamamoto another lap down.