On November 1, at the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix in Italy, Another 1-2 finish from the dominant duo of Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas earned the super successful Mercedes-AMG team their seventh-straight Formula 1 constructors title. A number of consecutive constructors titles that was previously unheard of in the rich history of the motorsport, until now.
As the lights turned green on the starting line of the infamous Imola track, the pack of pinnacle performance machines shot off the mark with Bottas taking the lead from pole position in his black Benz. His teammate Hamilton was less successful in the launch procedure as he became swamped by the Red Bull of Max Verstappen and Pierre Gasly in his ultimately faulty Alpha Tauri. The following few laps claimed Gasly, as the paddocks let out a collective groan in disappointment for the pitting Frenchman, it seemed that his car had sprung a leak.
From there on out, the DNF drama was far from over, as the race took its toll over time. With 12 laps to go, the Red Bull of Max Verstappen was looking set to take second place but a nasty surprise in the form of a rear right tyre puncture sent the Dutchman into a spin off the Villeneuve corner and into early retirement. With the Red Bull sitting in the firing line just off the side of the track, a safety car was issued and this gave way to a frenzied final few laps.
Daniel Riccardo pounced at the possibility of a podium as Verstappen made way for the smiley ‘stralian. However, Ricciardo didn’t just have to keep up with the blisteringly fast Mercedes but also defend against the Ferrari of Charles Leclerc in his rear view mirror and then eventually Daniil Kyvat who managed to out-manoeuvre the Monegasque with just a lap to go. Finally, Ricciardo crossed the line in third place and with that earned his second podium of his last season with Renault. Kyvat maintained his lead over Leclerc and finished fourth in a strong display for the sake of his future F1 career. Leclerc meanwhile did well to finish fifth, a good result for Ferrari in 2020 as the Monaco native’s veteran teammate Sebastian Vettel finished 13th. A somewhat better finish than just not finishing at all like the five drivers walking away from Imola with a DNF result.
In the end, the strong first and second place finish from Hamilton and Bottas respectively was enough to win the constructors title for the Mercedes-AMG team and to make Formula 1 history in the process. Hamilton, being no stranger to re-writing the history books himself, is now almost certainly on his way to his seventh world title as the end of a fantastic 2020 Formula 1 season draws near.Next up on the calendar is the Turkish Grand Prix, scheduled for November 15 at the Istanbul Park circuit, a track which the F1 circus will return to for the first time since 2011.
Featured image courtesy of @LewisHamilton on twitter