Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 29 November 2020

Lewis Hamilton wins in Imola as Mercedes claim seventh straight constructors' title

Hamilton seals record-extending 93rd win after completing 5,000 laps as a race leader

Lewis Hamilton made the most of his luck to lead team-mate Valtteri Bottas home in Sunday's Emilia-Romagna Grand Prix as Mercedes clinched a record seventh consecutive constructors' championship.

The six-time champion capitalised on pole-sitter Bottas's misfortune in picking up a debris-damaged floor to win an incident-filled race at Imola.

Hamilton recovered from a poor start, when he dropped to third, to fight back with a long first stint and the aid of a timely Virtual Safety Car (VSC) intervention to grab the lead.

Daniel Ricciardo finished third for Renault ahead of Daniil Kvyat of Alpha Tauri and Ferrari's Charles Leclerc after Max Verstappen had crashed out of the race in his Red Bull in the closing stages. He was unhurt.

Sergio Perez was sixth for Racing Point, Carlos Sainz finished seventh ahead of his McLaren team-mate Lando Norris and the two Alfa Romeos of Kimi Raikkonen, in his 325th Grand Prix race, and Antonio Giovinazzi.

It was Hamilton's record-extending 93rd victory in a race that saw him complete 5,000 laps as a race leader. The Mercedes one-two finish also not only secured the teams' title, but also ensured that a Mercedes driver will take the drivers' championship.

"That was an exhausting race," said Hamilton.

"The speed we had to go after a poor start – it's just overwhelming now because there are so many people in the team who are unsung heroes.

"I'm forever grateful to be a part of it and it always feels like the first time."

Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff said: "I'm not so much into the numbers, but this is something to be proud of – as long as we can stay energised and motivated, I think we can push it for ever. We are looking forward to a new challenge."

Bottas added: "The damage had a big effect for me today – suddenly out of Turn Seven on lap two there was debris. I tried not to run over it, but it made the car tricky to drive."

Ricciardo said it had been "a bizarre one. I thought fourth was the best I could do!"

Formula One takes a break before returning for the Turkish Grand Prix on November 15 where Hamilton could wrap up a record-equalling seventh drivers' crown.

Updated: November 1, 2020 07:52 PM

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