Hamilton praises ‘faultless’ Mercedes after comfortable Silverstone win

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Lewis Hamilton paid tribute to his “faultless” Mercedes Formula 1 team after easing to his fifth British Grand Prix victory at Silverstone on Sunday, leading home teammate Valtteri Bottas.

Hamilton went wire-to-wire to record his fourth win of the season and move to within one point of the drivers’ championship lead after Sebastian Vettel hit late trouble, causing him to finish seventh.

Hamilton was in a jubilant mood on the podium after the race, having tied the record for British Grand Prix wins and taken his fourth on the bounce, his victory streak stretching back to 2014.

“It wasn’t so easy, it’s never easy,” Hamilton said on the podium. “That was a feeling I can’t really describe. It feels amazing to be up here. I’m so proud to see all these great flags everywhere.

“The support this weekend has been immense, and I’m really proud that I can do this for you all. Thank you so much for all the support, for pushing us.

“The team was faultless this weekend. Valtteri did an exceptional job as well, so it’s a perfect weekend for us.”

Bottas battled back from ninth on the grid to finish second, completing his fightback when Kimi Raikkonen, Vettel’s teammate, also suffered a tire blowout in the closing stages.

The result saw Mercedes take the maximum score of 43 points from the Silverstone weekend, extending its lead over Ferrari in the constructors’ championship to 55 points.

As well as having Hamilton just one point shy of Vettel at the top, Bottas has moved to within 23 points of the lead, creating a three-way fight at the halfway point of the season.

McLaren almost back on schedule with 2018 F1 car after delay

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McLaren is almost back on schedule with its 2018 Formula 1 car development after losing two weeks due to a delay in deciding on its engine supplier, according to racing director Eric Boullier.

McLaren confirmed back in September it would be cutting ties with Honda at the end of the year after three difficult seasons, favoring a switch to Renault power units.

The decision was not taken lightly by McLaren, causing it to lose two weeks in the development of next year’s car, but Boullier confirmed in an interview with the official F1 website that the team is almost back on-track.

“Maybe we made the decision to change the engine manufacturer two weeks too late for our schedule, but these two weeks have almost been recovered,” Boullier said.

“Any big decisions are always difficult to take. The concept of McLaren winning with Honda was a dream for everybody, yes – it was a beautiful story.

“Today we have huge respect for them and we definitely don’t divorce with fights and screams and finger pointing. We are all very professional – and in the end it was a business decision, which they understand.

“There is a sadness that it didn’t work out like we wanted. McLaren-Honda in terms of brands was a good fit – in terms of results it didn’t work.

“That’s what it is in the end. Now we have to see that we get back to competitiveness – back to the top!”