Category Archives: Formula 1

Top 10 Memes of the 2021 Formula 1 Hungarian Grand Prix

It was never going to simmer down was it? After the gamesmanship of the qualifying session, the events of the race were almost guaranteed not to be a dull affair, particularly with the eagerly awaited rain to just add that little extra to the the proceedings, something that ended up not being needed, as it all happened and produced the following reactions.


Posted on Reddit by Rageoffreys

Well, we’ll start with the controversy right off the bat as Bottas really spiced up the race in under 1 corner.

Given Valtteri’s need for a new contract the conspiracies we’re always going to fly almost immediately with a shunt like that.

Now, we’re not saying that Mercedes would pull a stunt like this, but some teams definitely would.



Posted on Reddit by IceCreamForMemes

Staying on the theories, given what some fans seem to believe, this could have actually been a directive from the FIA.

As much as luck has fallen the way of the brit in  recent weeks, there’s nothing more to it than that. The image of just Hamilton lining up on the grid was ripe for ridicule, particularly with those ever present theories.


Posted on Reddit by Geoboy7

As anyone whose played the F1 games knows, some elements of the simulation leave a little to be desired.

Anyone whose played an online race and knows what some people behind are prepared to do to win won’t have been surprised in the slightest when the first lap events unfolded.


Posted on Reddit by Xinu03

Mercedes obviously would prefer to have both cars in the points, however if they can’t have that, the placement of Red Bull after isn’t exactly the worst thing for them.

Those rumours of foul play are going to have fuel for a little while longer it seems.



Posted on Reddit by erazedcitizen

If you’d heard the current driver order on lap 4 without actually seeing the race, you’d believe they were pulling your leg rather than the information they’d actually given you.

That’s why rain and changeable, unpredictable weather causes such excitement though, as potentially boring races are turned completely around.


Posted on Reddit by Ok–bro

We can’t talk about this race without talking about Ocon’s work out front to keep Vettel behind under immense pressure with a slower car.

Equally, Alonso’s work to keep a very quick Hamilton behind almost certainly enabled Ocon to take his inaugural win and guarantee valuable points for Alpine in the Constructor’s battle.


Posted on Reddit by Schmuckiii

Everyone’s seen the footage of Senna making his car as wide as the track against Mansell at Monaco and today Alonso channelled that.

Either that of the Alpine airbox is so wide their mid season update was to make the car match it.



Posted on Reddit by bingomoxi

George Russell really is a class act. Upon seeing that Williams had a real opportunity to use the pace in the car along with the difficulty to overtake and most importantly, using his car to help Latifi no matter the personal cost to his result, the Brit immediately got onto the team to say he had no problems.

If he needed a contract, that’d certainly make him more favourable, and karma gave him his first points, an excellent job all round.


Posted on Reddit by Danbuarth

A lot of tongue in cheek with this one. As much as it’s funny to laugh about thing’s always go Hamilton’s way, the 7-time champion looked completely drained by the end of the race.

It’s remarkable after how hard he had to push after a minor mistake that he actually physically made it to the podium.


Posted on Reddit by Flesh_er

Maybe they just didn’t remember the protocol after winning, maybe they’ve just got into the Olympic spirit and created a new sport of F1 Biathlon (On the cards for Paris 2024?). Either way, watching the second race to the podiums was both sublime and ridiculous.

And that’s it before the summer break. Formula 1 does as it does and after the antics of qualifying, offers up an even higher bar for the drama level to clear. Hopefully it’ll simmer down in the time off and the drivers will amp up the drama all over again. When it does, we’ll be here to round it all up with the help of the internet.

Grid Talk Podcast

Need to make sense of what actually happened and how big that effort was from the reigning champ? The Grid Talk crew produce a preview, qualifying analysis show and race review for every Grand Prix weekend. You can check out the latest show on our Podcast section.





Esteban Ocon takes Alpine’s maiden Grand Prix win after a chaotic wet start in Hungary

Esteban Ocon has won the Hungarian Grand Prix  to take Alpine’s maiden win after a chaotic wet start and a red flag eliminated much of the front of the grid.

The Alpine driver led a controlled race in front of the Aston Martin of Sebastian Vettel, who took his second podium of the season, after the grid was shaken up following a first lap incident where Valtteri Bottas collided with the Red Bull’s and Lando Norris.

The remainder of the race was a story of the midfield fighting at the top as Ocon defended from Vettel behind to win the Hungarian Grand Prix while Hamilton fought back after Mercedes made mistakes on the restart. Williams also picked up their first points of the season with Nicolas Latifi and George Russell finishing P8 and P9.

A Start followed by a red-flag

Hamilton had a strong start off the line, unlike his teammate Valtteri Bottas, the number 77 car was under pressure from the McLaren of Lando Norris on the charge as well as Max Verstappen to his left.

Bottas locked up on the oily surface into Turn 1, sending his car into the rear of Norris who then collected Verstappen as made his way around the first corner.  Bottas also took the Sergio Perez out of the race, going over his front wing, as he went straight on into the runoff with front end damage.

The incident left Norris’ McLaren with right side floor damage and he retired from the race. Perez also retired and pulled to the side of the track minutes later.

Lance Stoll, also struggled to slow down his Aston Martin, cutting the corner at Turn 1 over the grass and lost control over the wet curb and sending his car into Charles Leclerc’s Ferrari. Resulting in the pair’s retirement from the race.

Verstappen pitted for a new front wing and tyres but as he made his way out of the pits and towards the back of the pack the full damage became clear “We have lost the bargeboard on the left-hand side” he was told on the radio.

The race was then red-flagged due to the debris on the track and in the pitlane exit. 

Credit: Formula 1 Media

The Pitlane Restart

The red-flag period handed the Red Bull garage a lifeline with the engineers going to work on fixing Verstappen’s car as much as they could but the car left the pitlane for the restart with obvious damage to  the right side of his RB16B.  

The new re-starting order emerged with notable advantages such as Sebastian Vettel P3, Yuki Tsunoda P5. Nicolas Latifi P6, and Mick Schumacher P10.

As the remaining drivers were on their out lap, it became apparent the track was too dry for inters, the entirety of the grid pitted aside from Hamilton meaning the lights went out with only Hamilton’s Mercedes on the starting line.

The pitlane race was won by Williams and George Russell who left the pits in P2 behind Hamilton, but he was told to give four places back by the stewards due to undertaking in the pitlane. This left Ocon in P1 with Vettel and Latifi behind as Hamilton finally pitted a lap later.

 The drama continued in the Pitlane as Kimi Raikkonen was released into the path of Nikita Mazepin, leaving the Haas out of the race. Speeding in the Pitlane was also investigated with Giovinazzi, receiving a penalty

Alpine and Aston Martin battle for the lead

Ocon led a strong race for the opening laps after the restart with Vettel hanging a second behind with the pair dropping the Williams of Latifi by nine seconds who had Tsunoda and Sainz on his tail.

The fight for the lead was alive as the pit window opened, Vettel lapping faster than Ocon and on his tail, but Alpine held the cards with Fernando Alonso in P4.

Vettel entered the pit lane on Lap 37 but a small problem cost the team around 1 second on the stop and as Ocon pitted the lap later he came out in front of the Aston Martin.

With his tyres up to temperature, Vettel closed down on the front runner. Ocon in the Alpine however, was able to stay in control and crucially ahead of the Aston Martin even as the experienced head of Vettel kept up the pressure.

But ultimately, Alpine controlled the race and with Alonso holding up Hamilton gave hope into the final laps of the Grand Prix that Ocon had the win in his hands.

Credit: Formula 1 Media

Hamilton on the fight back

Turn 1 gave us most of the overtaking with Verstappen moving first, battling past the Haas of Schumacher who put up a fight against the damaged Red Bull. 

Hamilton after being sent back to P14, the last of the remaining drivers, struggled to make his way up the order and passed Giovinazzi on Lap 11 and was able to pass Schumacher a lap later than the Red Bull.

Hamilton pitted once more on Lap 20 for the hard tyres with the hope to go to the end. This meant Red Bull had to respond, pitting Verstappen a lap later for the same tyre.

However, the undercut worked for Mercedes, passing Verstappen as he exited the pit lane. While Hamilton was able to make progress on the new hard tyres, making it passed Tsunoda in P5 on Lap 33, the damaged Red Bull struggled to overtake.

Verstappen, while only making it passed Schumacher, pitted once more on Lap 42 for a set of medium tyres.

Hamilton closed down on the podium positions, only six seconds off the lead by Lap 45, but three laps later the Brit pitted for medium tyres and re-joined the race in P5. It wasn’t long before he heard “Hammertime” over the radio and he started to set his sights on the win.

Alonso wasn’t making it easy for Mercedes however, defending and leaving Hamilton struggling to pass for much longer than he’d hoped. Into Turn 2, the pair raced wheel-to-wheel through the first sector and Hamilton spent five laps behind the Alpine.

The Mercedes was finally able to pass the Alpine and it wasn’t long until Hamilton was on the tail of Sainz and made the pass on the inside of Turn 1 on Lap 68 to take the last podium position.

F1 2021: Drivers that Need a Good Hungarian GP Later Today

The gloves are off, and we are back to the F1 battleground. The stage has shifted from Silverstone to the Hungaroring that holds much promise to offer another enticing Hamilton versus Verstappen duel.

With Sir Lewis Hamilton taking a record-breaking ninth career pole at the Hungaroring, the most by any driver at the venue, the 2021 Hungarian Grand Prix is poised to be an exciting battle. Even more so since Max Verstappen, who’s authored a great challenge to the king of the throne thus far, has managed a third in qualifying.

And perhaps what only exacerbates Red Bull, aggrieved given their plea against Hamilton’s penalty at Silverstone wasn’t entertained by the FIA, is that none of their drivers start from the front grid, with Valtteri Bottas slated to begin second.

A lot of action and drama is poised to be unfurled at Round 11 of the 2021 World Championship, an event where there are a few drivers who’d be determined to up their game.

So let’s find out which drivers need to deliver a strong Hungarian GP?

Carlos Sainz

Carlos Sainz has ground to make up after his qualifying crash. Image: Ferrari

After sliding outside of the track in Q1, Ferrari newcomer Carlos Sainz Jr., who had been much quicker than Charles Leclerc for the better part of Friday. The talented Spaniard will be keen to pounce on the challenging midfield in the next few hours.

Starting today’s 70-lap challenge from fifteenth on the grid, Sainz will know that he’s got a car that’s nearly as quick as the McLaren. If not in terms of straight-line speed where, one has seen the other Ferrari of Leclerc being challenged, such as in events like Baku, where it didn’t take Hamilton and Mercedes long to pass the pole-sitter.

That being said, having been the better finisher among the two Ferraris, finishing above Leclerc in both rounds at Austria and having gathered a strong P6 at Silverstone, it’ll be brilliant for Sainz to collect a strong race finish at Hungary.


Yuki Tsunoda

Tsunoda has flattered to deceive after his incredible debut in Bahrain

The rookie Japanese driver, who collected points in his very first outing in Formula 1 has shown lukewarm form where the recent events stand. Although, where the last four Grands Prix are concerned, the Sagamihara-born driver managed to beat a more experienced teammate in Gasly on two occasions.

Picture the Steierkmark Grand Prix and the recent race at Silverstone saw Tsunoda finished ahead of Gasly.

Though, for Sunday’s Hungarian contest, Yuki begins from sixteenth on the grid, having failed to put together a strong lap in Q1, from which he was knocked out.

Knowing that he’s got a car perhaps slightly stronger than the Aston Martin and at par with Alpine Racing, Tsunoda should be in a position to contest the packed midfield shortly. But will he improve on his lowly starting position?

Max Verstappen

Verstappen will need to overtake at least one of the Mercedes to maintain his championship lead. Image: F1

Having crashed out in two important races now, one each at Baku and the next, at Silverstone, for no fault of his own, Verstappen, regardless of some of the way he’s been portrayed on social media, will be feeling crestfallen.

Someone who himself stopped the interviewers from hurling him questions related to the Silverstone saga, Max would know he has better things to focus on.

And right now, it’s to find a way to do better than what he managed during qualifying.

Aware that he’s starting from third on the grid and isn’t nearly as close to Hamilton as what he’d have liked in order to pose an early challenge, it will be an interesting sight to see the resilience of Hamilton being challenged by the aggression of a talented and fiery driver.

Moreover, for the sake of extending his lead over the world championship, instead of seeing it shrink, the chances of which are highly likely, Verstappen has to deliver a very fine Hungarian GP. Importantly, it also happens to be a venue where he’s never won a race before.


Kimi Raikkonen

Kimi Raikkonen’s season has yielded only one point so far

The Iceman with his thirteenth on the grid during Saturday’s qualifying provided a moment of reprieve to himself – provided he felt pressure in all this time- and to millions of fans who were rightly distraught at having seen a driver of such fine caliber having been knocked out in Q1 itself for the last four consecutive qualifying battles.

Starting P13, Raikkonen, given his penchant to move swiftly up the grid not long after the red lights turn green, would want to demonstrate a similar act, doing which he could land himself in a point-scoring chance.

Something that hasn’t happened for long, Baku being the last and only occasion where the sport’s most enigmatic and experienced driver scored a point and that too, a solitary one.

Having scored 9 of his 103 career podiums at Hungary, while a top-three finish is about as probable as is imagining the Adriatic sea minus water and fishes, Kimi’s task is clear and cut out- he’s to fight for points and make a possible race finish inside the top 10. Some would reckon even a P10 won’t hurt so much. But is it going to actually happen? We shall have to wait and see.

Grid Talk Podcast

If you want more reaction to yesterday’s qualifying session, the Grid Talk crew have you covered with their latest podcast. Ruby Price hosted Steve Jackson and Tom Downey in their 2021 Hungarian GP qualifying analysis. Audio and video versions of the show are both available below:

2021 Hungarian Grand Prix – Qualifying report: Tatics at play as Hamilton storms to pole!

It’s time for Qualifying. Bottas, Verstappen and Hamilton had all topped a practice session up to this point, so it was a real toss up on who would get pole. We were promised rain, and like all weather predictions in Formula One, it never came. Instead it was scorching heat with almost clear blue skies.

Pole here is very important, but only time would tell who would get it. Let’s get into the action


For fans of Mick Schumacher, it was worrying news as his crash in FP3 meant that it looked as though he would miss Q1 as they changed the gearbox.

Carlos Sainz coming very close to an AlphaTauri. Could it be a penalty? Credit:F1

Bottas was the first of the front-runners to set a flying lap and while it was a very solid lap from the Finn, Lewis was next over the line and went 2 tenths faster. But the battle wasn’t over as Max was the last over the line, going a further 2 tenths faster than Lewis.

Perez in the other Red Bull had not had the best of weekends up to this point and on his first run, he was slower than both Gasly in the AlphaTauri and Norris in the McLaren. He was over a second slower than Verstappen.

The Ferrari’s were patient and waited before setting their first flying laps. Sainz put his car on 4th, but he was released in the path of Pierre Gasly. He darted to the inside kerb to avoid, but still likely cost Gasly some time as he would have had to run wide at turn 1.

Leclerc in the other Ferrari was not able to replicate his team-mate’s pace and could only manged 7th, 4 tenths off Sainz.

As the drivers headed out for their final runs, Mr Saturday, George Russell, was in the drop zone and seemed to be in real danger of dropping out. Latifi was a few thousandths behind him. Tsunoda was also in trouble in 16th. After a poor weekend so far, he needed to avoid being eliminated.

Russell had 4 tenths to make up to get into Q2 and it proved too much as he missed out. It is the first time this season he was eliminated in Q1.

Despite Latifi also improving, he couldn’t beat George and would qualify in 18th. With Tsunoda also out, it was good news for Alfa Romeo who got both cars into Q2. A good showing from both Alfa drivers.

Eliminated: Tsunoda (16th), Russell (17th), Latifi (18th), Mazepin (19th), Schumacher (20th).


As expected both Mercedes and Red Bull cars emerged from the pit lane on Medium tyres. The best strategy is the one-stop and with the soft tyres burning up very quickly, it was important to get these laps perfect.

Sainz providing the drama again, but this time putting himself out of qualifying with a hefty impact. Credit: F1

Interestingly Perez opted for the Medium tyres despite his struggles around this track this weekend. Perez’s lap wasn’t amazing, but he was only 2 tenths off Bottas in 3rd who didn’t have a very good lap.

Lewis drove a blinder and was over 2 tenths faster than Verstappen in 2nd and half a second faster than Bottas.

But now it was the turn of the soft tyre runners. Vettel and Gasly were able to sperate Bottas and Perez from their team-mates, and then Fernando Alonso came out of nowhere to put his Alpine in 2nd.

Ferrari took their time again and Leclerc went faster than Verstappen to put his car in 2nd, however Sainz put his car in the wall at the final corner. This brought out the red flag with 6 minutes to go. Sainz was able to keep the car running but ran over his front wing and was forced to retire.

Bottas and Perez now faced a tough choice. They either sacrifice another set of Medium tyres or use the softs to try to make sure they get through to Q3. Norris and Stroll who showed great pace in Q1 were in the danger zone and would need a big lap to get them through to Q3.

Bottas did choose to run the medium tyres again so there was no room for error for the Finn. He put in a 1:16.7 which would see him comfortably into Q3.

Verstappen switched to the soft tyres and set the fastest lap on the soft tyres which could cause some issues in the race tomorrow.

Perez also switched to the softs and went 4th, behind Norris in 2nd and Gasly in 3rd. Ocon was able to get his first Q3 appearance this season with 9th. Vettel put in a mega lap to push Daniel Ricciardo out of Q2. His Team-mate Lance Stroll could only do as well as 12th.

Eliminated: Ricciardo (11th), Stroll (12th), Raikkonen (13th), Giovinazzi (14th), Sainz (15th).


It was clear from Q1 and Q2 that the track speed was get much faster so this was going to be very tactical to get the best lap possible.

Gasly put in a great effort to qualify 5th for tomorrow’s race. Credit: AlphaTauri

After the first run of lap, it was Hamilton who put his car on provisional pole. He was half a second faster than Verstappen in 3rd place. But, it was a Mercedes front row with Both red Bull cars behind.

Leclerc was best of the rest in 5th, but only 2 tenths of a second separated Leclerc in 5th and Norris in 9th. Norris used a a set of old soft tyres.

Vettel went out on his own to set his singular lap of the session and it put him in 8th for the time being.

Some strange games were going on between Lewis and Max. Lewis was very slow through the pit-lane and then he was holing him up throughout the out lap. Lewis was in no rush to get on with it, which would have been irritating for the red bull drivers stuck behind.

This meant that Perez could not get over the line in time and was stuck in 4th.

Neither Bottas, Hamilton or Verstappen could not improve their times which locked out the front row for Mercedes.

Gasly did an amazing lap to be best of the rest ahead of Lando Norris in 5th. A great lap for Lando as he got ahead of the Ferrari of Charles Leclerc.

But the race was now setup for Tomorrow. It was going to be very tough race for Red Bull who have a big challenge ahead of them.

Full Classification

Grid Talk Podcast

If you want more reaction to yesterday’s qualifying session, the Grid Talk crew have you covered with their latest podcast. Ruby Price hosted Steve Jackson and Tom Downey in their 2021 Hungarian GP qualifying analysis. Audio and video versions of the show are both available below:

Grid Talk Podcast

If you want more reaction to yesterday’s qualifying session, the Grid Talk crew have you covered with their latest podcast. Ruby Price hosted Steve Jackson and Tom Downey in their 2021 Hungarian GP qualifying analysis. Audio and video versions of the show are both available below:

2021 Hungarian Grand Prix – FP1 & FP2 report: Could Bottas upset the title fight?

After two weeks which has seemed to split the Formula One fanbase in two, it was nice to see some on-track action for a change. Lewis Hamilton is coming into this weekend hoping for his 9th win at the Hungaroring. But this track is nicknamed “Monaco without walls” and given the dominance shown by Red Bull in Monaco a few months ago, this could be another tense weekend.

Let’s get straight into the Friday action.


Max Verstappen was fast out of the gate and looking to get back at Mercedes right away. He set the initial pace on the hard tyres. Lewis Hamilton was not happy with the setup of his car. He complained of understeer and could not keep up with Max or Bottas throughout the session

Fernando Alonso turned 40 this weekend and proving that he’s still human behind the wheel. Credit: F1

The condition were very hot in Budapest and teams were hesitant to use the medium tyres. However, McLaren decided to avoid the hard tyres for Lando Norris and use the Medium tyres. An unusual move for McLaren but time will tell if this could pay off when Sunday arrives.

Kimi Raikkonen was absent from this session as Robert Kubica took over his seat. It’s always great to see Kubica behind the wheel of a Formula One car. He was responsible for much of Alfa Romeo’s running as Giovinazzi was stuck in the garage. Antonio was only able to complete five laps putting him on the back foot for the weekend.

Giovinazzi was not the only one who had trouble though as Fernando Alonso had a high-speed spin on the exit of turn 4 which saw him in the pits for a while.

But for Yuki Tsunoda his escapades at turn 4 were more session ending. With less than a third of the session remaining, Yuki got a bit greedy on the entry kerb into turn 4 which spun his car around and put him in the wall. This brought out the red flag.

After the car was cleared and the barrier was repaired, the drivers started to emerge on the soft tyres. Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen almost had a little moment in the pit-lane, coming out at the same time.

But at the end of the session, it was Max Verstappen who managed to pip Bottas to the top of the timing sheets by only 0.067 seconds. Hamilton was a further tenth behind in 3rd place.


The temperature climbed up even further for the afternoon session and the teams looked to make the most of it. 19 out of the 20 cars were all out on track within the first few minutes of the session. Most teams opted for the Medium tyres to gauge their qualifying and race potential.

Lewis Hamilton looked better in the afternoon session, but still lost out to Bottas on Quali runs. Credit: F1

But while Tsunoda was stuck in the garage after his crash, Gasly was out putting on a good show in the other AlphaTauri. He put his car in 5th place early in the session. Tsunoda’s car required a new gearbox and and whole new rear-end. It would be a push to get him out before the end of the session.

Out on track though, it was Lewis Hamilton who set the early pace. After some balance issues in the morning session, he looked to be a bit more comfortable.

Max was complaining that he was still having some balance issues from the morning session. But he wasn’t far off the Mercedes pair in third as the teams now switched the focus to qualifying runs.

Bottas came alive and managed to get ahead of Hamilton by 0.027 seconds. Verstappen waited a little longer to do his qualifying run, but Max’s run was far from clean. A clean last sector saw him nearly 3 tenths off Bottas and Hamilton. Far from ideal.

Esteban Ocon was showing some resurgence by putting his Alpine in 4th place, ahead of Sergio Perez, who didn’t look comfortable over both sessions, nearly half a second off Max Verstappen.

With only 2 minutes to go, Tsunoda left the garage and he would only be able to set a single flying lap. It was far from an impressive time, only managing to get his car in 17th place. It would be a big day for him tomorrow.

Why does Tsunoda keep crashing?

This is now the fourth time in 12 races that Yuki Tsunoda has brought out the red flag. With results not being the best as well, a lot of doubts are starting to dwell on Yuki’s place in Formula One.

Yuki hit the wall hard with his crash and meant it was a delayed start for him in FP2. Credit: F1

Of course, he is the youngest driver on the grid and this is his first season in Formula One, so you have to give him some leniency in his performance.

But while we mock Nikita Mazepin for some of his antics on tracks this season, Yuki has not been much better with his crashes.

Now, I do not believe that Yuki should be chucked out of his seat at AlphaTauri because he clearly has a lot of pace and potential, but he just needs to start being more consistent and keep his car out of the wall. The Summer break could be crucial for Yuki to reset and go again.

FP1 Full classification

FP2 Full classification

Grid Talk Podcast

Want more content before the Hungarian Grand Prix this weekend? Check out the Grid Talk Hungarian Grand Prix Prixview! This week George Howson is joined by Philip Mathew, Jack Watson and Alex Booth. Both video and audio versions of the show are down below:

F1 2021 Hungarian Grand Prix Preview: Will Hamilton Claim Win 100 in Hungary?

After Austria, Max Verstappen was threatening to run away with this championship. The Flying Dutchman racked up four wins in five races and built up a lead of 32 points over Sir Lewis Hamilton. However, Hamilton and Verstappen’s crash two weeks ago at Silverstone has changed the complexion of the title fight.

Verstappen still leads, but now by only eight points as Formula 1 heads to arguably Hamilton’s best circuit. Sir Lewis has won eight times in his 14 races at the Hungaroring, a stellar record by anybody’s standards. Although, Mad Max will be fired up after the British Grand Prix, so it’s sure to be a fascinating contest. Here’s Sportlight’s 2021 Hungarian GP preview!

Track Guide

The Hungarian Grand Prix has been ever-present on the Formula 1 calendar since making its debut in 1986. The Hugaroring has remained largely the same in the following 35 years and is often called “Monaco without the barriers”.

Image credit: Formula 1

Qualifying is incredibly important in Hungary because passing is very difficult. The only spots on the circuit where overtaking is common are Turns 1 and 2, which both follow DRS straights. Hungary is also a circuit which rewards alternate strategies, especially when it’s hot like this weekend is forecast to be.

Don’t rule out Valtteri Bottas and Sergio Perez being deployed tactically by Mercedes and Red Bull, respectively, either. With passing so hard, the Ferrari and McLaren drivers could produce a surprise podium as well.

Hungary has produced some of the best Grands Prix of the modern era. 2014 saw Daniel Ricciardo with a tactical masterclass. The following year saw one of the most chaotic races ever and who could forget Jenson Button’s first win in 2006?


Last time out

Hamilton was the fastest driver in qualifying, but Verstappen jumped the home hero off the line in the first-ever Formula 1 sprint qualifying race to line up on pole on Sunday. The tables were turned in the race, as Hamilton got the better start off the line and challenged Verstappen for the lead throughout the first two sectors.

The pair tangled into Copse corner, with Verstappen losing a wheel and flying into the barriers with over an 50G impact for good measure. Max was thankfully alright, but his race was over. Hamilton survived but was passed by Charles Leclerc for the lead.

Hamilton and Verstappen’s crash has continued to dominate the headlines. Image: Reuters

When the racing restarted after the red flags, Leclerc held his advantage over Hamilton. To make matters worse for Lewis, a ten-second pit-lane penalty put him behind Bottas and Lando Norris. Hamilton though, roared on by the British crowd passed the pair and relentlessly chased after Leclerc.

Sir Lewis Hamilton would overtake Leclerc at Copse with a few laps to go and magnificently claim his eighth British Grand Prix victory. Leclerc was a brilliant second, his first podium of the season, with Bottas completing the podium. Norris and Daniel Ricciardo rounded off an excellent day for McLaren with fourth and fifth, respectively.

Carlos Sainz recovered from his Sprint Qualifying off to finish sixth. Fernando Alonso produced an excellent performance to take seventh in his Alpine, with teammate Esteban Ocon in ninth. Lance Stroll was a solid eighth, with Yuki Tsunoda claiming the final point in tenth.

A record-breaking weekend for Sir Lewis?

Hamilton and Mercedes won three of the opening four rounds and it seemed as though both were heading for an eighth championship crown each. However, since the Monaco Grand Prix, the form book had completely turned, with Red Bull winning every race. That has now changed, with Lewis in position to set some huge milestones.

If Hamilton wins on Sunday, it will be his 100th Grand Prix victory and his ninth in Hungary, the most for both any circuit and event in Formula 1 history.

There aren’t many records Hamilton hasn’t broken

Verstappen will be doing everything he can to stop that happening, though. The Dutchman almost won in 2019 and finished a credible second last year. However, Mercedes are arguably faster over one lap, so it may be the case that Max has to pass Lewis or run a superior strategy to stand on the top step of the podium on Sunday.

With Turn 1 being extremely wide, don’t rule out a last of the late-brakers move from either championship challenger. If that happens, we could well have a new crash to talk about through the summer break.

Session Times

Practice 1: 30 July               10:30-11:30 (5:30-6:30 AM EST)

Practice 2: 30 July               14:00-15:00 (9:00-10:00 EST)

Practice 3: 31 July               11:00-12:00 (6:00-7:00 EST)

Qualifying: 31 July    14:00 -15:00 (9:00 -10:00 EST)

Race: 1 August             14:00 (9:00 EST)

All times are in British Standard Time (BST), unless stated otherwise.

Grid Talk Podcast

If you want more content to preview your Hungarian Grand Prix weekend, the Grid Talk crew have you covered with their latest podcast. George Howson hosted Jack Watson, Alex Booth and Phil Mathew in their Hungarian GP Prixview. Both audio and video versions of the show are available below:

F1 Blast from the Past: Button Ends Long Wait for First Formula 1 Victory


Round 13 of the 2006 Formula One World Championship was at the Hungaroring, near Budapest. Fernando Alonso continued to lead the driver’s standings coming into the weekend, but a recent drop in form coming off the back of Renault’s mass damper controversy had allowed the Ferrari of Michael Schumacher to close in. Three consecutive victories for the German had allowed him to close to the gap to Alonso to just 11 points.

Alonso and Schumacher’s title battle would define the 2006 season

Following the departure of Juan Pablo Montoya after the United States Grand Prix, another big name had left the sport before Hungary. Jacques Villeneuve was deemed unfit to drive following his crash at the German Grand Prix the previous week and was replaced by Poland’s Robert Kubica. However, the 1997 World Champion parted company with the BMW Sauber team permanently.


The weekend got off to a controversial start when championship leader Alonso felt that Red Bull’s third driver Robert Doornbos had impeded him during Friday’s second practice session. The Spaniard remonstrated furiously with the Dutchman and brake tested him. Alonso was handed a one-second time penalty for each part of qualifying.

To make matters worse, he incurred the same penalty for overtaking under waved yellow flags later in the session.

The only F1 race in Eastern Europe produced plenty of penalties for the top dogs. Image: ppm Hungary

The defending world champion wasn’t the only one in trouble, though. Jenson Button’s Honda engine failed in Saturday morning’s practice session, giving the Englishman a 10-place grid penalty.

However, the other championship contender also found himself in hot water. Kubica followed Alonso around the final corner as both slowed following the red flag, but Schumacher drove round the outside of both of them. Subsequently, the German also gained a two-second penalty for each part of qualifying.

Kimi Raikkonen avoided the controversy to take his second pole position in as many weeks. The Finn was ahead of the two Brazilians of Felipe Massa in the Ferrari and Rubens Barrichello’s Honda. While the penalties imposed resulted in Schumacher starting 11th, Button 14th and Alonso 15th.

Slip and slide at the start

For the first time in its history, the Hungarian Grand Prix started in wet conditions. The 70 laps got underway with Raikkonen holding his lead, but Massa made a poor getaway as Barrichello and the second McLaren of Pedro de la Rosa got ahead.

It was very much sink or swim at the start of the 2006 Hungarian GP. Image: The Checkered Flag

Further back, both Schumacher and Alonso made excellent starts. Schumacher was quickly up to fifth and by the end of the lap had disposed of Giancarlo Fisichella’s Renault for fourth. Alonso had surged through the field and was only two places behind in sixth after dismissing Massa’s Ferrari into the final corner.

Alonso then quickly got past his teammate Fisichella for fifth before hunting down Schumacher. Despite their grid penalties, unbelievably they were dicing for fourth after just a few laps.


On Lap Four, Alonso boldly passed Schumacher round the outside of Turn Five. Button also got the better of Schumacher on lap seven, the German had started on full wet tyres and as the track was briefly drying, the Ferrari was on the backfoot.

On Lap 17, Giancarlo Fisichella was battling with Schumacher when the German caught a snap of oversteer and tagged the Italian, damaging his front wing. Schumacher sunk to ninth, while Alonso found himself in the lead after both McLaren’s made their first pit-stops.

A race of attrition

The rain began to get heavier and on Lap 18, Fisichella spun off at Turn 8, the damage ended his race. Robert Kubica also spun at Turn Five and would head to the pits for a new nosecone. On Lap 26 the Safety Car was brought out after a terrifying incident which saw Raikkonen launch over the back of the Toro Rosso of Vitantonio Liuzzi.

The Italian had backed off to let the McLaren lap him, but Raikkonen was caught out by the deceleration and couldn’t avoid the Toro Rosso. Alonso used the opportunity to make his first pit-stop and retained his lead from Button and de la Rosa.

The race restarted on Lap 32 and Schumacher’s incident-packed race continued when he collided with David Coulthard’s Red Bull at Turn 2 and spun, but quickly recovered. Button was flying in the Honda as the track was drying out again, setting the fastest lap of the race thus far and closing in on Alonso. Kubica was also recovering well, catching Massa napping and moving into the points.

At the end of Lap 46, Button headed to the pits for his second fuel stop, he was followed soon after by Schumacher. Neither opted to change their tyres. Alonso then made his stop on Lap 51, relinquishing the lead to Button but the Englishman would have to pit again. However, the Renault had a problem exiting the pits, the driveshaft had failed leaving the Spaniard careering into the tyre barrier at Turn 2 and out of the race for the first time in 2006.


Button was then left with a comfortable lead, Schumacher was up to second but his gamble to stay on intermediates didn’t pay off as de la Rosa and Nick Heidfeld, both on dry tyres, began to catch him. With just six laps to go, de la Rosa made a move down the inside going into the chicane, Schumacher straight-lined the chicane and refused to concede the position to the Spaniard.

On the next lap, de la Rosa attempted the manoeuvre again, Schumacher cut the chicane for the second time but the McLaren made it through to second place. One lap later at the same spot, Heidfeld tried the same move, Schumacher refused to yield and there was contact, it was the Ferrari that came off worse with a broken right-front track rod. A frustrating weekend finally came to an end for Schumacher.

At the front, Jenson Button, in his 113th Grand Prix, finally scored his first victory after a brilliant drive from 14th on the grid. Pedro de la Rosa followed him home in second for his first career podium finish, and Nick Heidfeld took BMW Sauber’s first podium finish. There hadn’t been a happier podium for a long time.

Barrichello completed Honda’s day with fourth place ahead of Coulthard and Ralf Schumacher. Robert Kubica finished seventh on his debut but was excluded for an underweight car. Leaving Felipe Massa picking up two points and Michael Schumacher salvaging the final point after been classified two laps down.

It had been a long time coming but Jenson Button had answered his critics and had become a Grand Prix winner in one of the most entertaining races in modern Formula 1 history.

Grid Talk Podcast

If you want more content to preview your Hungarian Grand Prix weekend, the Grid Talk crew have you covered with their latest podcast. George Howson hosted Jack Watson, Alex Booth and Phil Mathew in their Hungarian GP Prixview. Both audio and video versions of the show are available below:

Top 10 Memes of the 2021 Formula 1 British Grand Prix

Well. That was an interesting one. Depending on what side of the fence you give your support, this weekend will have been either a dream or a nightmare, given the last few races. A brand new format is in the mix now and it’s fair to say there were mixed reactions to both that, and a very controversial incident on-track. The tangle between the champion and pretender to the throne dominated the memes so we’ll be taking a little bit of a different look this week.

Without any further ado, let’s get into it.


Posted on Reddit by djehutinakht

Out of context, this looks bad from the 7 time Champion. Given a small amount of thought though, and the circumstances become clear. Hamilton was told Verstappen was ok, and had served his penalty, finally getting a win after 5 races being on the back foot. At home in front of a full crowd of fans would have felt unbelievable in comparison.



Posted on Reddit by Blaze17IT

As much as the circumstances aren’t ideal to be praising Leclerc, the guy is doing what’s required to the letter. The Monegasque picked up the pieces after an accident in front, got past Bottas in what should be a faster Mercedes, and kept Hamilton behind for almost every lap and taking an unlikely win. Top marks from us.


Posted on Reddit by TheOriginalNozar

Say what you want about the penalty (and canvassing the reaction online, people have) The stewards awarded him it, he took it, and he happened to win the race after it. End of story. Going down the route of applying penalties based on effect, while feeling ‘right’ is a dangerous slope, and would do more harm than good.


Posted on Reddit by assetsmanager

Clearly referencing the email Toto claimed to send to the race director (Not sure why, he’s not the stewards who actually decide the penalties)

This diagram misses a few things, such as similar moves by Lewis on Leclerc and if memory serves, Kovalainen in 2008 with no issue. At the speed and fuel loads both drivers approached the corner, neither has peak performance available. Lewis was also completely alongside and therefore had command of the width of the track and Verstappen could have gone wider as he had at Abbey, the first corner of the lap.



Posted on Reddit by Flippie132

It’s also somewhat different to compare the Leclerc incident with Verstappen, as the gap in tyre grip was much wider. Amazingly, Leclerc had less tyre grip despite leading. Perhaps that’s a weakness of the Ferrari, but either way, Leclerc was forced to yield, rather than having the choice not to.


Posted on Reddit by HarryNyquist

Even after the controversial events that cause Leclerc to be the leader for 50 laps, hearing he was losing power isn’t what any racing fan wants to hear. When expecting a clean dogfight between the sport’s best, mechanical trouble always leaves a fan feeling cheated.


Posted on Reddit by Ikcatcher

F1’s red flag rules dictate a like-for-like replacement of parts in red flag conditions. This leaves only two possibilities when using duct tape to fix a £150,000 piece of carbon; Mercedes had no identical replacements, or they believed they could save money for the cost cap by using a quick fix.



Posted on Reddit by Xinu03

We touched on this, but Michael Masi has no say over the decisions of the stewards. To hear both team principals appeal to the race director seemed a little childish, or worse, football-esque.


Posted on Reddit by steakhouseNL

While we’d love to believe the Spidercam (That is genuinely its name) was actually a flying squirrel only found in North Buckinghamshire and trained by Pinewood studios, alas, it’s not THAT cool and it’s just a marvellous shot we’ve had since 2011.


Posted on Reddit by hjaltewm

While a lot has been made of the penalty being too lenient, or that somehow the stewards favour the champion, the fact is that he commentators are racing drivers allowed their own opinion. Even on the main coverage, and in the paddock, there was a huge disparity in opinions. That’s a set of differences we have to respect.

With that controversy well and truly over. Oh who are we kidding. This will rumble on for at least the next couple of weeks. Coincidentally, that’s when F1 is back and we’re sure nothing controversial will happen there.

Grid Talk Podcast

Want some commentary on that controversy? The Grid Talk crew produce a preview, qualifying analysis show and race review for every Grand Prix weekend. You can check out the latest show on our Podcast section.






2021 British Grand Prix – Sprint Qualifying report: Max takes pole as Perez spins out

Ever since this was announced, we have eagerly waiting to see how this sprint qualifying would work. This was a best test for the drivers and Formula One.

It was a very strange to see the cars lining up on the grid, but as the “race” got closer, it was very exciting as this was a step into the unknown for Formula One.

This race would be only 17 laps long and will set the grid for the actual race tomorrow. The top three drivers will receive three, two and one points respectively.

So let’s get into the action for the very first sprint qualifying.

Split choice of the tyres

It was a scorching day at Silverstone and the sun was shining on a very hot track. I would have made sense to start the race on the medium tyres, but it was not the case for all driver. Bottas, both Alpines and Kimi Raikkonen decided to start on the soft tyres.

it would be a risk for Mercedes to put Bottas on the soft tyres but they needed to be aggressive to get ahead of Max Verstappen off the start.

It was the same case for the Alpine cars who would want both of their drivers as high up the order as possible to have the best chance of scoring points in tomorrow’s race.

A very punchy start

Max’s brakes were on fire and so was Max.

Mercedes’ gamble didn’t pay off at the start as Verstappen flew past Lewis Hamilton at the start. He had the lead by turn 1. he was under pressure from Bottas, but managed to keep his teammate behind as he started on his persuit of the lead.

Hamilton first looked to make a move down the Wellington straight, but Verstappen just managed to hold on. Lewis wasn’t finished there though. Lewis lined up his next move on the run up to Copse corner. He looked to the outside, but Max held the inside line and held onto the lead.

That was not the only drama on the opening lap. Carlos Sainz and George Russell had a coming together through Brooklands. This put Sainz all the way down in 19th place.

Mazepin also found himself facing the wrong way and he collided with his team-mate.

But not all drivers fell backwards. Vintage Fernando Alonso came back to life at the start and made up six places on the opening lap. He was in 5th place at the end of lap 1 with both McLarens and the Red Bull of Sergio Perez bearing down on him.

Alonso fought hard, but couldn’t hold on

People who worried about the lack of overtaking and action must have been delighted with Fernando Alonso.

Lando Norris was hounding the Spaniard, and despite Alonso weaving down the Hangar straight and did everything he could to keep Norris behind, Lando found his way past with a great move down the inside of turn 3.

Next was Daniel Ricciardo. Alonso did all he could to keep the Australian behind, but Ricciardo looked to make a move similar to his teammate going into turn 3. Alonso had the inside covered which forced Daniel to the outside. Daniel made the move stick into the loop and took 6th place. Alonso wasn’t done though. He had a go at Ricciardo going through Brooklands and Luffield, but Daniel held on.

Alonso was now under pressure from Sebastian Vettel in the the Aston Martin, but this time he did not buckle and held off Vettel to qualify in 6th place for tomorrow’s race.

Carlos Sainz makes a good recovery

Being 19th after lap 1 of the sprint race is never ideal, but he did a great job to get his Ferrari back up the order.

He was making some amazing moves as he battled through the field. A notable move from Carlos was overtaking Kimi Raikkonen around the outside of Copse corner. An incredibly brave move in a normal Grand Prix and it was more brave today given short the race is and how much is at stake.

His move on Gasly for 11th place was also impressive. He couldn’t make the move into Stowe, but piled on the pressure through the Vale chicane and got the cutback through Club and got the move done as they crossed the line.

Usually 11th place wouldn’t be the worst place to start the race as you would get free choice of tyres, but that isn’t the case this weekend as all drivers will get a free choice of tyres, so it’s going to be tougher for Carlos to make up those places.

Mixed bag for Red Bull

Well it was Max Verstappen who took control from lap 1 to take pole position for the race tomorrow. but the other Red Bull will be starting from the very back.

As Perez was chasing down Ricciardo and Alonso, he overcooked it on the throttle as he was going through chapel and spun out of the race. He was incredibly fortunate to just miss the barrier, but it put him all the way at the back of the field.

He did recover to 18th before he was forced to retire from the race with a single lap to go. It’s going to be a tall order for Perez to make his way through the field in tomorrow’s race.

As for Max, he now has a huge upper hand on the Mercedes. Lewis really struggled with blistering, and while Max’s tyres also blistered, they were in a better condition than Lewis’ at the end of the race.

with temperatures expected to rise again for the race, it looks to be advantage Max Verstappen. However, with Perez at the back, hw will be under threat from Hamilton and Bottas behind.

Full classification

F1 2021 British Grand Prix Qualifying Report – Hamilton roars ahead for P1 in front of a home crowd

It feels wrong – no, not wrong, odd – to report on qualifying at this time. It probably feels odd to the teams as well, given the re-configured timetable for this weekend, as sprint qualifying makes its debut tomorrow, the 3-stage format we’ve come to love moved to a Friday evening slot.

After a dominant practice, all 1 hour of it, Verstappen topped the times with Lewis Hamilton’s best practice effort outpaced by the Dutchman by nearly 8 tenths as well as a certain Lando Norris. At least it was 2 Brits in the top 3 at Silverstone.

Could anyone unseat mighty Max for P1, not pole, for tomorrow’s sprint race? Let’s find out.


Charles Leclerc corrects a wayward slide at Club corner ruining his lap. Credit: F1

Norris set the pace right off the bat, putting nearly a half-second between him and his team-mate in his first attempt. Hamilton quickly showed the fellow Brit what real speed was in his initial run, a second between the Mercedes and the McLaren, before Max’s Red Bull gave him the same treatment by 0.4 of a second. 0.4 is formidable even on a run when you don’t have to bail out the throttle at the last corner. Car 33 made it to Q2 on only a single set of tyres.

Leclerc was putting together a second lap faster than his first until it all fell apart at the last hurdle, a boot full of throttle taking him more towards Oxford than the finish line.

The Alfas were looking quick before the last runs, Giovinazzi in 9th and Raikkonen in 12th. Giovinazzi’s effort was good enough for 12th and Q2.

Russell was hanging around the drop zone with half a minute to go, before a lap good enough for 14th place maintained his status as Mr. Friday & Saturday? Maybe the nickname needs work.

Vettel banked his place in Q2 with a 5th place run, as Perez took P2 before being usurped by Leclerc and then Hamilton.

Eliminated: Tsunoda (16th), Raikkonen (17th), Latifi (18th), Schumacher (19th), Mazepin (20th)


Williams elated as Russell makes Q3 again, something about home advantage? Credit: F1

The Mercedes were first out of the pits, perhaps putting on a show or maybe just wanting the heat from the rapidly cooling tarmac. Hamilton inevitably topped the times on his first run (Verstappen hadn’t completed his yet) though not without some notable understeer through a number of medium and low speed corners.

Verstappen’s first run was notable closer to the 7 time champion’s, only 0.098s ahead this time around. The Ferraris left their initial runs late, maybe trying to take the space available over a heap of traffic. That may have not been with the full agreement of one Monegasque, noting the need for a tow on his laps over the radio.

Last runs of Q2, all cars were on track, though the cheers came in particular for Hamilton, P1 with a 1.26.023. That was then immediately surpassed by Russell, showing his salt with a P7 in the Williams. Verstappen could only bring the gap to 0.292s on his last run, leaving it all to play for in Q3.

Norris and Ricciardo scraped into the shoot-out as Stroll became a notable exception, qualifying in only P15 at the team’s home race.

Eliminated: Alonso (11th), Gasly (12th), Ocon (13th), Giovinazzi (14th), Stroll (15th).


Given Q2’s result, it was all teed up to be an electric shoot-out for P1 in tomorrow’s sprint race.

Back on top. Lewis Hamilton takes the top spot of the shoot-out at home. Credit: F1

A slight change to this last session of qualifying, the drivers only permitted 1 set of softs each for the final session.

Hamilton, perhaps giving away how he got the upper hand of Red Bull’s golden boy, mentioning how he refused to give Verstappen the tow. On the first runs it appeared he hadn’t got his wish though if the Dutchman had the tow, it appeared it wasn’t worth much, a tenth slower through sector 1. The middle sector was where his strength lay, 2 tenths faster, though it didn’t help as understeer in Club left him 0.172s down.

Cheers erupted for all 3 Brits as Russell, Hamilton and Norris were roared home as F1’s 3 lions. The Williams must have run on noise more than petrol, a jubilant crowd helping him to P8.

After the romantic image back to the main event, the prize fight, the slugfest. Hamilton versus Verstappen.

Hamilton was setting purple sectors all over his last run before a kick of oversteer slowed him down through Vale leaving him unable to improve. Vertappen’s ball. Maybe it was pressure, maybe it was going off tyres, but Max Verstappen couldn’t improve either as understeer hampered his efforts and put him only on P2. Lewis Hamilton takes P1 for the sprint and sets up a mighty qualifying race with his teammate Bottas behind.

Full Classification

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