Lewis Hamilton wins first F1 race in U.S. since 2007
A bold passing maneuver at the end of a long straightway slipped Lewis Hamilton past Sebastian Vettel, and the McLaren driver went on to win the U.S. Grand Prix on Sunday in the first Formula One race on American soil since 2007.
The drivers’ championship will be settled next week in Sao Paolo, Brazil, after Red Bull’s Vettel finished second and Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso third.
“Wicked!” said Hamilton, who pumped his fists, waved to the crowd and danced a jig on the nose of his car after his fourth win of the season. “This is one of the best, if not the best Grand Prix, we’ve had all year.”
Vettel started the race in the pole position and led the first 41 laps before Hamilton caught him, sneaking past Vettel just before they reached the tight corner on turn No. 12 at the Circuit of the Americas. Hamilton started in the No. 2 position and pushed Vettel at every opportunity.
“It was a close fight with Lewis. He had one chance and took it. There wasn’t much between us,” Vettel said.
Vettel, the defending two-time Formula One champion, remains slightly ahead of Ferrari’s Alonso in the drivers’ championship, meaning the title will come down to the final race of the season.
Hamilton, who won the last U.S. Grand Prix, talked all week about how much he loves the United States and how badly he wanted to win in his return.
With the stars and stripes of the American flag painted on top of his helmet, Hamilton pulled off the daring move of the race with his pass. Vettel had been dominant in practice and qualifying on the new $400 million track that none of the teams had driven before this week, but couldn’t hold off the former world champion Sunday.
Kudos to Lewis Hamilton and McLaren – and special cheers for Austin, Texas which did a fabulous job not only with the technical side of the race – they made lots of friends for the world’s number one motorsport and the city of Austin with their friendliness, helpful attitude.
I watched the race on SpeedTV and just about every spectator and journalist interviewed couldn’t say enough about how well they were treated.