After three victories in a row, Lewis Hamilton had to leave the victory at the Grand Prix in honor of the 70th anniversary of Formula 1 to Max Verstappen. The World Cup leader still finished second, but due to problems with his tires, had a tough race on his home circuit at Silverstone.
"Pooh, this was quite a challenge", Hamilton sighed in a first reaction after the fifth race of the season. "Congratulations should go to Red Bull and Max, they clearly didn't have the same tire problems as we did today."
Mercedes was very dominant this year with three wins for Hamilton and one for Valtteri Bottas. Hamilton was so much faster than the other teams last week - with Verstappen best of the rest - that he won the first race at Silverstone while driving much of his final lap with a flat left front tire.
On Sunday the temperature was a bit higher on the English circuit and Mercedes had major problems with the tires throughout the race. "It is unexpected that I had such 'hardcore' blisters on my tires," said Hamilton. "I don't know why, we have to investigate that as a team. We haven't had this before."
Verstappen - who started fourth behind Bottas, Hamilton and Nico Hülkenberg - paid close attention to his tires and only had some problems in his second stint on the mediums. The Dutchman was no less than eleven seconds ahead of Hamilton on the line and nineteen seconds ahead of number three Bottas.
"My first stint was very difficult, Max was already catching up", said Hamilton. "You don't want to believe what I tried to manage my tires in my second stint, but it didn't help."
Lewis Hamilton had serious problems with his tires at Silverstone. (Photo: Pro Shots)