Hamilton Clinches World Championship In Hurricane Affected US GP
Formula One
The US Grand Prix started under a cloud of uncertain weather conditions, its Hurricane season in this part of the world at this time of the year. Although Hurricane Patricia’s path headed towards Mexico its power was such that it still caused torrential downpours in a rain affected weekend. As a result Qualifying occurred on Sunday in mixed conditions but the upshot of it all was that Mercedes were again 1st and 2nd with Rosberg getting the better of his world champion in waiting team mate Lewis Hamilton. The race began with a part wet/dry track, Rosberg got away well but Hamilton made a better start and going into the first uphill left hand hairpin bend Hamilton and Rosberg were side-by-side with Hamilton on the inside line. Hamilton was in no mood to yield, knowing he could win the drivers championship if he finished ahead of his teammate. Hamilton squeezed Rosberg as they both apexed turn one and Rosberg was pushed wide which allowed the two red Bull’s of Kvyat and Ricciardo past. US-Grand-Prix-2015-Start Hamilton didn’t stretch away from the the Red Bull’s indeed Ricciardo hunted down his prey, eventually took the lead on lap 12 and sped away. For the first half of the 56 lap race it looked as though the Red Bulls had an advantage in the wet/dry conditions. The lead changed hands on numerous occasions, Hamilton’s pace suddenly dried up by now Rosberg found pace and swept by, he then set about attacking Ricciardo for the lead, the red Bull driver was struggling in drying conditions. Rosberg eventually took the lead and now looked certain for the race win. US-Grand-Prix-2015-Vettel-Lotus But as the track dried out the Red Bull’s floundered, Ricciardo had no option but to watch as Hamilton charge past for second on lap 26. By now the Mercedes cars began to draw strength from a drying track and were therefore able to unleash their full pace. Ricciardo would eventually finish 12th in part due to a late race collision with the Force India of Nico Hulkenberg and Kvyat made a driver error when he went wide, spun, hit a retaining wall on the opposite side of the track on lap 43. This brought out a short safety car period. US-Grand-Prix-2015-Vettel-Rosberg-Last-Lap Hamilton was gifted the lead by Rosberg on lap 48 after the latter made a mistake by applying too much throttle in turn 15, the rear tyres spun and this pitched Rosberg into an aggressive oversteer. This in turn damaged the rear tyres. As Rosberg collected his thoughts Hamilton swept back into the lead not long after emerging from a late pit stop. By now Rosberg was struggling for pace and looked set to loose second to the Ferrari of Sebastian Vettel who had fallen prey to Rosberg’s superior Mercedes a few laps earlier. Vettel started from 13th and battled his way up to 3rd, helped in part by multiple virtual/safety car periods. If the race ended with Hamilton, Rosberg, Vettel it would mean that Hamilton would have to wait until the next race in Mexico to mathematically wrap up the drivers championship. But as you know by now Rosberg clung onto second which meant Hamilton did win his third drivers title at the US GP with three races remaining. US-Grand-Prix-2015-Hamilton-Podium-Trophy-Drinking Hamilton now joins Jackie Stewart as the only other British driver to win three world titles. With more race wins Hamilton becomes the most successful British F1 driver of all and still has time on his side to set new records. Drivers with Hamilton’s ability are a rare breed and surface only once in a generation. Formula One is most difficult motorsport category to master. Very few drivers win an F1 title by driving inferior cars. Plenty of talented drivers have been made to look ordinary, at times Hamilton makes it look almost too easy. 2015 US Grand Prix Race Results
Pos. Driver Country Team Time Points
1 Lewis Hamilton GBR Mercedes 1:50:52.703 25
2 Nico Rosberg GER Mercedes +2.850s 18
3 Sebastian Vettel GER Ferrari +3.381s 15
4 Max Verstappen NED Toro Rosso +22.359s 12
5 Sergio Perez MEX Force India +24.413s 10
6 Jenson Button GBR McLaren +28.058s 8
7 Carlos Sainz ESP Toro Rosso +30.619s 6
8 Pastor Maldonado VEN Lotus +32.273s 4
9 Felipe Nasr BRA Sauber +40.257s 2
10 Daniel Ricciardo AUS Red Bull Racing +53.371s 1
11 Fernando Alonso ESP McLaren +54.816s 0
12 Alexander Rossi USA Marussia +75.277s 0
NC Daniil Kvyat RUS Red Bull Racing DNF 0
NC Nico Hulkenberg GER Force India DNF 0
NC Marcus Ericsson SWE Sauber DNF 0
NC Kimi Räikkönen FIN Ferrari DNF 0
NC Felipe Massa BRA Williams DNF 0
NC Romain Grosjean FRA Lotus DNF 0
NC Valtteri Bottas FIN Williams DNF 0
NC Will Stevens GBR Marussia DNF 0
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