This Hungarian Grand Prix will have been surprising until the end. Like Saturday, it was a driver that we weren’t expecting who came out on top. Only tenth on the grid, Max Verstappen overtook the drivers ahead of him on the grid one by one. Either on the track or during pit stops, carried by a perfect strategy from Red Bull. Starting on soft tyres, he was able to stop when necessary, especially during the second salvo in the pits where he managed the undercut on George Russell.
A perfect strategy, Ferrari dreams of it. But, weekend after weekend, the Italian engineers redoubled their inventiveness to lose crucial points to their drivers and Charles Leclerc in the lead. The Monegasque had again done everything necessary by extending his first stint on medium tires and overtaking Russell on a regular basis to lead the Grand Prix. This is the moment chosen by Ferrari to ruin everything. An incomprehensible stop to fit hard tires unable to function and his race was ruined.
Verstappen then Russell then overtook him and, faced with the evidence of this bad choice, Leclerc returned once again to finish the race on soft tyres. One stop too many which then places him behind Sergio Perez in sixth place. Far from his rival for the title who took the opportunity to increase his lead to 80 points despite a spin in the race. The latter also benefited from a brand new engine after his power problem in qualifying while avoiding the slightest penalty.
Mercedes, hell looks good on them
Mercedes had to suffer at the Hungaroring and Friday confirmed this quite well with lap times almost a second behind the leaders. But the weather got colder and so did the track. Russell set the tone on Saturday by taking pole position, the Silver Arrows confirmed in the race for a second consecutive double podium. “King of the Hungaroring” where he has already won eight times, Hamilton has once again made his racing science speak for a fifth podium in the last five Grands Prix.
Ambitious after its fine qualifying session, Alpine was disappointed this Sunday. First to put on hard tyres, the French team paid to learn. And the crash test was violent. Neither Fernando Alonso nor Esteban Ocon was able to get these tires to work and had to drop back down the pecking order. They nevertheless keep their single-seaters in the points, the Spaniard (8th) finishing just ahead of the Frenchman. Starting from the pit lane, Pierre Gasly made a good comeback to 12th place.