Sebastian Vettel steered his way through the first lap drama of the Hungarian Grand Prix and relentlessly pursued Esteban Ocon to initially secure his second podium of the 2021 season, before a post-race investigation led to a disqualification. Lance was caught up in the opening lap melee and is raring to come back stronger in Belgium after the summer break.
Congratulations to Esteban, it is his day and I am very happy for him. He deserved the victory.
Speaking before his disqualification: "Second place is a great result and we can be proud of our performance, but when you are that close to victory, you always want more. At the start of the race, I could see the contact ahead of me, so I took the inside line and found myself with the leading cars. From then on, I felt like I tried to take the lead for the entire 70 laps, but it is so difficult to overtake here. I think we were quicker for most of the race, but there was not enough of a difference to make an overtake because it was very hard to follow in the dirty air. I tried to pressure Esteban [Ocon] into a mistake, but he did not make a single one. Congratulations to Esteban, it is his day and I am very happy for him. He deserved the victory. I will sleep well tonight knowing I gave it my all. We have a good fight on our hands in the midfield with Alpine and AlphaTauri, so we will take the summer break to rest up and come back ready to fight in Belgium."
We will take the break to regroup and we want to come back stronger in Belgium.
"It is really frustrating to have to retire so early in the race. Once the incident at the front of the field happened, I took the line to the inside to try and avoid making contact, but I locked up under braking. As soon as that happened, I knew I would not make the corner because it was so slippery and tricky out there. I did all I could to avoid contact but, unfortunately, my race was over. We will take the break to regroup and we want to come back stronger in Belgium."
Formula One is all about tiny increments, and it was a couple of tiny increments that cost the team our first Grand Prix win today.
Speaking before Sebastian's disqualification: "Formula One is all about tiny increments, and it was a couple of tiny increments that cost Aston Martin Cognizant Formula One™ Team our first Grand Prix win today. Had our lap-36 pit-lane time-loss been just a fraction of a second less, Sebastian would have jumped [Esteban] Ocon and would surely have held on to win. Having said that, second place is a great result for us, and Ocon drove mistake-free. Again, Lance was unlucky, for he made a truly sensational start, passing a lot of cars, including Sebastian, and, had he not been involved in a Turn One shunt, we may well have had two drivers on the podium today. However, faced with a tangle of cars in front of him, Lance was left with nowhere to go, and that was that. But his time will come, mark my words. Finally, I want to pay tribute to everyone who has worked so hard to make today’s result possible, both here in Hungary and back home in the UK. Next up is the summer break, then Spa!"
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Your guide to Mogyoród
Qualifying on Saturday can often decide a team's race before a single Grand Prix lap is completed, but quick-thinking on the pitwall can be powerful – and possibly the only way to make up positions. Researching past races, analysing the data and the team's current performance, our strategy engineers predict the key factors that could decide the Hungarian Grand Prix, presented in partnership with Title Partner Cognizant.
Cognizant's Keys to the Race
Strategy is crucial in Hungary, and track position is king. A sub-optimal strategy can be mitigated if a driver has track position. Still, an average pit time loss of 22 seconds makes both a one- and two-stop strategy viable, and there can be a big advantage to fresh tyres after a second stop. There have been four Safety Cars in the last 10 races, and no VSCs since 2018, so they can’t be relied on in strategy calls.
The first lap is important in any Grand Prix, but it's make-or-break in Hungary. The hairpin at Turn One is wide and follows a heavy braking zone, offering plenty of opportunities to gain ground on a rival. There have been more than 15 position changes on the first lap in the last three Hungarian Grands Prix.
Overtaking at the Hungaroring is difficult, but DRS is especially powerful because there is only one detection zone, right before Turn 14. A driver within range will gain the benefit down the main straight, but also through the exit of Turn One and into Turn Two. Expect this to have a decisive impact on overtaking.
Hungary is one of the least power-dependent circuits on the Formula One calendar, prioritising set-up and high downforce. Feeling planted in the car is the key to a quick lap because a single mistake can ruin a lap. From a dusty track surface on a Friday to on-the-edge driving on Sunday, the Hungaroring is a unique challenge. Our official Cyber Security Partner SentinelOne presents the key technical facts and stats behind a single lap of the track.
Unlocking the lap
The main straight is of average length on the Formula One calendar, but drivers still hit 320km/h (198mph) before heavy braking at the 70m mark into a sharp, right-angle third-gear corner, the best overtaking spot of the lap.
Drivers will maintain speeds of 100km/h (62mph) as they start to unwind the steering wheel and stamp the accelerator, shifting towards the right-hand side of the track ahead of Turns One and Two.
Turn Two is a downhill bend and a slow corner, around 120km/h (74mph). The key is to keep a tight line, moving towards the apex on the inside before progressively leaning towards the outside on exit. Running wide is costly, and drivers can end up chasing the lap time around the remainder of the circuit.
Drivers then immediately arrive at the kink of Turn Three, a higher-speed corner taken in fifth gear at 230km/h (142mph). The run to Turn Four is the second-longest straight on the circuit, beginning with a slight downhill run before a steep incline.
Turn Four is the second-fastest corner of the lap, requiring focus and commitment. Drivers maintain speeds above 240km/h (149mph) as they dart left and prepare for a slow and technical second half of the lap.
Unlocking the lap
The long hairpin of Turn Five is all about setting up the entry. Carry too much speed, and you’ll run wide, losing time, which is then compounded on the short straight that follows.
Drivers arrive at the Turns Six and Seven chicane at 250km/h (155mph), braking hard down to 110km/h (68mph), which is then followed by the medium-speed and sweeping Turn Eight.
Then there's a swift change of direction at Turn Nine, a sweeping right-hander. The average speed is around 160km/h (99mph), and drivers slalom through the two corners to keep momentum.
Turn 10 is a barely noticeable kink before the all-out Turn 11, taken completely flat as the fastest corner on the circuit, driven in sixth gear and at 260km/h (161mph). After that free-flowing section, it's back to classic Hungarian Grand Prix technical twists as drivers drop all the way down to second gear at Turn 12.
The deep right-hander is then followed by the slow Turn 13 hairpin, a real challenge for drivers to maximise because the tyres drop off late in a one-lap shootout or long into a race stint. There's one last challenge for the drivers as they reach the last corner, Turn 14. A good exit is key to set up the next lap, and drivers use the full width of the circuit to maximise it.
The Hungarian Grand Prix made history when it joined the Formula One calendar, and it has remained a mainstay of Grand Prix racing. From strategic challenges to Formula One firsts, Global Partner NetApp breaks down the highlight facts and figures ahead of the looming summer break.
#IAMSTORIES - Fanni
From her hopes of seeing a new generation of Hungarian talent in Formula One, to her first experiences of the Hungaroring, this is Fanni's story in her own words.
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