Hamilton Overcomes Mexico Grand Prix Struggle To Secure 5th Drivers Title

2018 Mexican Grand Prix, Hamilton celebrates 5th world title, Dailycarblog.com

By his own admission, the 2018 Mexican Grand Prix was by far the worst race of the season for Lewis Hamilton and team Mercedes. Red Bull dominated the proceedings from the get-go. The Red Bulls are specialists around tight twisty circuits and they locked out the front row in qualifying with ease. Hamilton was next up, ahead of his championship rival. Sebastian Vettel.

The championship, though mathematically still winnable for Vettel and Ferrari, was statistically impossible to reverse. Even if Hamilton finished 7th and Vettel had managed to win Hamilton would still be crowned world champion.

The race. Hamilton made an excellent start from third and out accelerated polesitter and slow starter, Daniel Ricciardo. Verstappen assumed the lead.  But Hamilton was closing down fast into the turn 1.

2018 Mexican Grand Prix, Dailycarblog.com

The two battled wheel to wheel but Verstappen had the inside line and the advantage. From that point on he would never be realistically challenged again.

Behind him, the race was as frantic as it was tense. Hamilton held a steady 2nd during the opening phase. However as the race progressed his Mercedes didn’t. It didn’t matter what tyre strategy he was on, the Mercedes could not manage it’s tyres consistently.

2018 Mexican Grand Prix, Hamilton on the grass, Dailycarblog.com

The Mexican Grand Prix was a struggle for Mercedes. As such Hamilton would steadily drop down the order. The reverse was happening to his main mathematical challenger. Vettel drove a fine race to secure second, making decisive overtakes as he moved up the order to secure 2nd.

Daniel Ricciardo didn’t fare as well. The Aussie driver couldn’t match the race performance of his teammate. Though he shilled between 3rd and 4th throughout the race his race was over by lap 62 with 9 laps to go as his Red Bull suffered a mechanical failure.

The 2018 Mexican Grand Prix belonged to Verstappen, he and the Red Bull utterly dominated the race. However, the day belonged to Lewis Hamilton who wrapped up his 5th driver’s title.

2018 Mexican Grand Prix, Hamilton, team hugs, smiles, Dailycarblog.com

The record books show he is only the third man in the history of the sport to win five titles. Hamilton stands next to the legendary Juan Manuel Fangio.

Only Schumacher has managed to better the record, with 7 drivers title. Hamilton still has time to equal the Schumacher record. Doing so will be tough, and will depend on many factors.

2018 Mexican Grand Prix Results: Autódromo Hermanos Rodríguez, Mexico City

Pos No Driver Car Laps Time/Retired PTS
1 33 Max Verstappen Red Bull Racing TAG Heuer 71 1:38:28.851 25
2 5 Sebastian Vettel Ferrari 71 +17.316s 18
3 7 Kimi Räikkönen Ferrari 71 +49.914s 15
4 44 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 71 +78.738s 12
5 77 Valtteri Bottas Mercedes 70 +1 lap 10
6 27 Nico Hulkenberg Renault 69 +2 laps 8
7 16 Charles Leclerc Sauber Ferrari 69 +2 laps 6
8 2 Stoffel Vandoorne McLaren Renault 69 +2 laps 4
9 9 Marcus Ericsson Sauber Ferrari 69 +2 laps 2
10 10 Pierre Gasly Scuderia Toro Rosso Honda 69 +2 laps 1
11 31 Esteban Ocon Force India Mercedes 69 +2 laps 0
12 18 Lance Stroll Williams Mercedes 69 +2 laps 0
13 35 Sergey Sirotkin Williams Mercedes 69 +2 laps 0
14 28 Brendon Hartley Scuderia Toro Rosso Honda 69 +2 laps 0
15 20 Kevin Magnussen Haas Ferrari 69 +2 laps 0
16 8 Romain Grosjean Haas Ferrari 68 +3 laps 0
NC 3 Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull Racing TAG Heuer 61 DNF 0
NC 11 Sergio Perez Force India Mercedes 38 DNF 0
NC 55 Carlos Sainz Renault 28 DNF 0
NC 14 Fernando Alonso McLaren Renault 3 DNF 0

Note – Hartley received a 5-second time penalty for causing a collision.

 


 

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