4 November 2019

Six and a half hours after the race

The United States Grand Prix at the Circuit of the Americas was a great triumph for Mercedes, with Valtteri Bottas winning the race and Lewis Hamilton finishing second and by doing so, winning his sixth World Championship title. He is not just one short of Michael Schumacher's all-time record and he is clearly planning to after that in 2020. Although Ferrari strong in qualifying, the challenge evaporated in the race with Sebastian Vettel going out with a suspension failure early on and Charles Leclerc being completely off the pace, finishing 52secs behind the winning car in a lonely fourth place, which led to speculation that a technical clarification from the FIA on Saturday may have had an major impact on the team's performance. We will see, no doubt, in the remaining races of the year. It was an exciting race beginning with Bottas and Max Verstappen leading Hamilton. Lewis needed only four points to secure his sixth World Championship, but he has never been one to drive for points and, gambling on a one-stop strategy, he drove another superb race, taking the lead when Bottas and Verstappen pitted early on, Valtteri covering Red Bull's attempt to under-cut him. Hamilton remained ahead until his pit stop 10 laps later and then ran third until his two rivals stopped again on laps 34 and 35 and he went back into the lead. He had an advantage of just under 10 seconds with 20 laps to run. It was a question of driving hard but conserving his tyres. Gradually Bottas and Verstappen both closed in but he fought hard to keep his team-mate behind him. But on lap 52 Bottas went ahead and Lewis was left watching his mirrors as Max closed in. They got to the finish line with 0.8s between them. Behind the distant Leclerc, Alex Albon fought back after a first lap incident and pit stop. he charged back, pitting twice more, and made it through to fifth. Behind him the Renault-engined cars wiped up most of the remaining points with Daniel Ricciardo sixth, Lando Norris seventh, Sainz eighth and Nico Hulkenberg ninth. The final point saw drama as Dany Kvyat once again ran a rival off the road on the final lap, but penalised and so Sergio Perez got his place back and with it a World Championship point.

- Lewis Hamilton talks abotu winning
- F1 goes to Hollywood
- We analyse the new F1 rules in great detail
- We look back to the Dutch Grand Prix of 1977 - DT goes to the movies
- JS has a rant about red tape
- The Hack looks back to days of yore
- Peter Nygaard, celebrating his 600th Grand Prix, rushes around COTA snapping frantically

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