Lewis Hamilton with Team Principal Martin Whitmarsh on Podium at the Hungaroring

McLaren Returns to Winning Pace at Hungaroring

by F1Fan on July 27, 2009

Lewis Hamilton wins the first race of the season for McLaren at the Hungarian Grand Prix today.

Lewis’s win combined with Hiekki Kovalainen’s dramatically improved performance and fifth place finish prove what many F1 pundits were predicting, the modifications to the MP4-24 chassis introduced on Hamilton’s car at the German Grand Prix have transformed the McLaren into a truly competitive machine.

The KERS equipped teams, McLaren and Ferrari seemed to have a definite advantage at the Hungaroring, with both Hamilton and Raikkonen using KERS to its full advantage at the start , and a few laps later enabling Hamilton to get by Mark Weber and start chasing down Fernando Alonso for first position. Alonso was running very light on fuel making an early pit stop and enabling Hamilton to take over the lead.

Following his pit stop a loose front wheel nut ended Alonso’s race when first the wheel spat came loose and flew off shortly followed thereafter by the wheel itself.

Raikkenon kept the pressure on Webber all afternoon driving fast enough to overtake while Webber made a pit stop.

The current Championship leader Jenson Button struggled all afternoon with the handling and tire wear on his Brawn GP car as did his team mate Barrichello.

However the final results could have been a lot worse for Button’s championship race, Vettel retired and Webber was pushed down to third while Button managed to finish in seventh place. With Hamilton and Raikkenon taking the bulk of the points Buttons lead only shrank four points as Webber took over second position in the championship from his team mate Sebastian Vettel.

Hungarian Grand Prix Results (Top Eight)

1Great BritainLewis HamiltonMcLaren10
2FinlandKimi RaikkenonFerrari8
3AustraliaMark WebberRed Bull Racing6
4GermanyNico RosbergWilliams5
5FinlandHeikki KovalainenMcLaren4
6GermanyTimo GlockToyota3
7GBJenson ButtonBrawn Gp2
8ItalyJarno TrulliToyota1
Updated July 26, 2009
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