British GP: Carlos Sainz seals first-ever Formula 1 victory

Carlos Sainz can call himself a Formula 1 winner after taking victory at Silverstone on Sunday afternoon.

The Spaniard sealed a first-ever pole position in the sport yesterday and would not be denied victory, with him plotting a way through the chaos of the British Grand Prix to stand on the top step, alongside Sergio Perez and Lewis Hamilton.

Where, then, to start with this one?

Firstly, a huge shunt at the first corner of the opening lap red-flagged the race as Zhou Guanyu flew into the barriers upside down following a tangle with Pierre Gasly and George Russell.

In the melee, Alex Albon also found himself going into the pitwall, and then collected by several cars, leaving him needing to be checked over by medical staff at the track and then airlifted to hospital for extra precautionary checks.

Zhou, meanwhile, also needed medical checks but was thankfully given the all-clear, and in truth this could have been a very dark Sunday at Silverstone had it not been for the huge improvement we’ve seen in safety over the years in F1.

The restart came, then, and Sainz had been given a reprieve after getting mugged by Max off of the line the first time, with him able to maintain his first place at the second go.

A mistake from the Spaniard would threaten to take victory from him later on, however, only for Verstappen, who sped through, to run over some AlphaTauri debris to effectively ruin his race.

Verstappen would eventually come home in P7, and said that was about as good as he could do with the lack of downforce he was suffering thanks to the part lodged underneath his car.

It looked like a Ferrari battle out in front, then, but Lewis Hamilton was showing good pace and keeping them honest, whilst Sergio Perez battled through the field to fourth after an incident left him pitting early and dropping to 16th.

Leclerc was quicker than Sainz, and overtook the Spaniard to avoid them both being overtaken by Hamilton around the pit-stops, before a Safety Car caused by Esteban Ocon grounding to a halt scuppered Leclerc’s chances.

Inexplicably with Leclerc in the lead, the team pitted only Sainz for fresh tyres and so, come the restart, Charles was a sitting duck.

NORTHAMPTON, ENGLAND – JULY 03: Carlos Sainz of Spain driving (55) the Ferrari F1-75 on track during the F1 Grand Prix of Great Britain at Silverstone on July 03, 2022 in Northampton, England. (Photo by Clive Rose/Getty Images)

Sainz, Perez and then Hamilton, after a brilliant wheel-to-wheel battle, would overtake the Monegasque, whilst Alonso was pushing him very hard in the closing stages.

Out in front, though, Sainz had bolted and he’d face no issues in securing his first-ever race win, with Perez and Hamilton joining him on the podium.

Leclerc came home in fourth ahead of Alonso, whilst Lando Norris was sixth ahead of Verstappen, who was pushed hard by Mick Schumacher in the closing stages – the German eventually came eighth to secure his first-ever world championship points.

Sebastian Vettel took ninth on his birthday, meanwhile, ahead of Kevin Magnussen in the other Haas.

Sainz becomes F1’s newest winner, then, and it might be fair to suggest he is becoming one of the form men in the sport right now.

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