• Hungarian Grand Prix 2007

Hamilton takes victory despite team rift

David Addison
August 5, 2007
Lewis Hamilton with team-mate Fernando Alonso © Sutton Images

Lewis Hamilton won the Hungarian Grand Prix but it was the rift between him and his team-mate Fernando Alonso that was the main talking point of the weekend.

It all began in qualifying when Fernando Alonso, struggling to cope with the pace of his rookie team-mate, complained that the British driver had impeded a qualifying run. Then, when Alonso pitted before his second run, he waited for 10 seconds after being released by the team before exiting his pit box. That in turn affected Hamilton who couldn't drive into his pit box until Alonso left his. As a consequence, Hamilton missed a second qualifying run and there were complaints to the stewards about Alonso's tactics. He was penalised five places on the grid and that left Hamilton on pole - and with the public's sympathy. The affair marked the collapse of the relationship between the two drivers and between Alonso and McLaren.

Come race day, Hamilton was unfazed by the spat. He pulled away from the pack, many of whom struggled away from the grid on the dirtier side of the track at which overtaking is notoriously difficult.

Kimi Raikkonen gave chase but was powerless to stop Hamilton from extending his championship lead as the Ferrari came home second from Nick Heidfeld's BMW Sauber. A fired-up Alonso took fourth ahead of Robert Kubica (BMW Sauber) while Ralf Schumacher made a rare appearance in the points with sixth for Toyota. Nico Rosberg's Williams was seventh ahead of the Renault of Heikki Kovalainen that had punctured its nose early in the race when battling with Alonso.

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