Lewis Hamilton wins his 3rd Championship amid best race of the season at US GP

Well, at least this weekend wasn’t boring. (My guinea pig has just texted me to hint she’s hooked).

It looked as though the Championship would carry on until Mexico, as Lewis Hamilton appeared to be going backwards, losing out to the Red Bull of Daniel Ricciardo and then his teammate, Nico Rosberg.

Hamilton did well to stay calm and wait for his opportunity to retake the lead of the race. For once, we saw numerous battles for the lead of the race, rather than stupendous moves in the midfield whilst a Mercedes or Ferrari went for a Sunday afternoon drive.

Not that the midfield was lacking in drama – huge praise for Max Verstappen who was running in third, and had his tyres not been much older than Vettel’s, looked set for a podium. Carlos Sainz also made an impressive recovery from his crash in qualifying and last-place position on the grid to finish 7th.

In the early stages of the race, Ricciardo and Kvyat were looking like the stars of the US Grand Prix, saving both the audience at home, and the poor spectators who suffered greatly yesterday, from a mundane race. It was heartbreaking to see Kvyat crash and Ricciardo fall down the field, only able to manage 10th in the end.

After it seemed as though FP3 timings may be used instead of a cancelled qualifying session that ultimately did happen to determine the grid, it was a shame to see two stars from that session not finish the race: Bottas due to a broken rear suspension after coming together with Grosjean on the first lap, and Hulkenberg breaking his front suspension fighting with Daniel Ricciardo.

Ultimately neither Williams car finished the race, as did several others: only 12 runners remained after the retirements of Stevens, Grosjean, Ericsson, Bottas, Raikkonen, Hulkenberg, Massa and Kvyat.

It also momentarily looked as though both McLarens would finish in the points, though ultimately they finished 6th and 11th.

Having lost the race so spectacularly at the start, it looked as though Rosberg had achieved the perfect recovery and we were set for a title decider at F1’s return to Mexico. However a mistake from Rosberg cost him the lead, and ultimately both his and Sebastian Vettel’s title hopes. For a moment, this writer suspected Rosberg would let rival Vettel past to take second and keep the Drivers’ Championship alive, but ultimately he held his ground.

However, whilst both the Drivers’ and Constructors’ Championships may now be wrapped up neatly with bows, ultimately it was the fans who won today: after all, having been given such a spectacular race, we’ve been given numerous reasons to tune in for the remaining three races.

And it must be said, whilst Mercedes have dominated this year, Ferrari are slowly showing themselves to be a bigger threat than perhaps anyone could have imagined …

The Mexican GP continues next week on 1st November.


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