Max Verstappen wins his 7th consecutive race following victory at the Hungarian Grand Prix, leading Lando Norris in 2nd by over 30 seconds.
Hamilton had a poor start off the grid, getting overtaken by Verstappen, Piastri and Norris to fall down to fourth. Zhou Guanyu however had a much worse start, falling from 5th all the way down to 13th before reaching turn 1, and then braking slightly too late and nudging Ricciardo’s rear, which caused a knock on effect of Ricciardo hitting Ocon who hit Gasly. Both Alpines were forced to retire, marking the second race in a row that the French team would fail to have either driver finish. Zhou would get a five second penalty for the incident.
Following on from the start, Verstappen would begin to quickly pull away from Piastri in second, as he has done so often this season.
After starting in 9th, Sergio Perez began his charge up the order by overtaking Alonso on lap 8, taking himself up to seventh after gaining a spot due to Zhou’s poor start.
The race had began to settle down until drivers came in for their first stops of the day. Albon pitted the earliest on lap 9, whilst the likes of Stroll, Bottas and Tsunoda would follow him in response.
Carlos Sainz pit on lap 15 when it looked like Perez was about to overtake him. Sainz, having been behind his teammate Charles Leclerc during their first stint, would get the undercut and overtake the Monagasque in the pits, due in part to a very long stop for Leclerc.
Hamilton pit on lap 17, and McLaren would respond to this by bringing in Norris one lap later to cover him off. McLaren would bring in Piastri the next lap, and despite having been ahead of his teammate for the whole of the first stint, one extra lap on old tyres meant he got jumped for second place by Norris.
There would be overheating issues for Lewis Hamilton, as the seven-time world champion would lose a significant amount of time to the McLarens during the pitstop phase. Hamilton had to manage temperatures in his car for much of the middle stint which significantly affected his pace.
Having started on the hards, Perez would pit for his first set of mediums on lap 24. This put him back behind Sainz, though he was able to get past within a few laps. He would overtake George Russell just one lap later, though the two came rather close to hitting one another, with Russell trying to keep his nose in as the two came into turn 3.
Perez then looked to try and make a move on Hamilton, though an overtake was unable to happen before Perez’s second stop on lap 43. Piastri had come in at the same time, and Perez was also within striking distance of the Australian. Perez would overtake on lap 47, giving Piastri very little room to work with on the exit of turn 2.
Leclerc would pit on lap 44 and hoped to be able to undercut his teammate. Whilst successful, Leclerc would receive a 5-second penalty for having sped in the pit lane.
Hamilton would come in on lap 50, with Perez having gained a massive advantage over the Mercedes driver. The pit stop also put Hamilton 6 seconds behind Piastri, but he was able to overtake the Australian by lap 57, with the aim of trying to chase down Perez. Hamilton would gain in the dying laps, and perhaps could have overtaken Perez had the race been a few laps longer, though he would have to settle for 4th.
Norris’ 2nd place looked under threat with Sergio Perez looking to claim a Red Bull 1-2 on the day that the team would break the streak for most consecutive wins by a constructor. However, whilst Perez would get the gap down to 3 seconds, trouble overtaking backmarkers for the Red Bull meant that Norris was able to see the race out in second.
Further back, whilst Leclerc was able to build a 5 second gap to Sainz, a surging George Russell was still a threat. Russell overtook Sainz on lap 65, and would move within 5 seconds of Leclerc just a few laps later.
This victory is Verstappen’s 7th win in a row, and Red Bull’s 12th. The record for most consecutive wins stood for 35 years, with McLaren winning 11 consecutive races in 1988.
Verstappen continues to increase his lead in the championship, now being 110 points ahead of Sergio Perez.
F1 next races in Belgium next weekend, for the last race before the summer break.