Pre-Silverstone: It's Show-Time!

Published on by Kevdawg

Vettel once again dominated to a race victory in the European Grand Prix increasing his hopes of a back-to-back World Championship. By looking on paper, the season could be described as boring. But Ferrari got close which made the European event fun to watch. And Vettel has been pushed to his limits many other times. So every race could still go down to the wire even if Vettel ends up the race winner.


The next race on the Calendar is Silverstone, England. This is the place where Formula 1 was born 62 brilliant seasons ago. It was the site of motorsport's rebirth after World War II. As a group of teams before the war and newer teams formed. The first Formula 1 Grand Prix field took of at the same place where the Formula 1 stars of today will.


There have been some editions to the track, which might have spoiled some of the fun that happened back in 1950. Whether or not editions had been made to the track, the circuit would always be Silverstone, and that's the heart of racing, new or old. The track will always be Silverstone.


Over the past years of the British Grand Prix, we've seen a mixture of things: huge accidents, total domination, revenge, and lots of fun things to talk about. Controversies, rain, one driver taking another driver out, engine blows, and glorious wins. All of which show what this track is. Here is a look back at this amazing event from 2008 onwards.





ABOVE: Red Arrows preform before the race


2010 at Silverstone brought big controversies and revenge. On Saturday, Red Bull gave both their drivers a new type of front wing that was particularly designed for the race at Silverstone. But in Saturday's morning practice, Vettel's front wing broke. Red Bull didn't have any replacements, so, since Vettel was higher placed in the championship, they took the front wing of Webber's car and put onto Vettel's. Webber soon got mad at this. He felt as if he was now the number two driver at Red Bull. And his mood would just get worse when Vettel took the pole from him in qualifying.



ABOVE: Webber leads as Vettel runs wide due to a puncture


When the race started, Vettel made a quick dive to the right to squeeze his teammate to the wall. His move wasn't successful however. Webber got past while Vettel ran wide. The Red Bull chassis had a puncture. Vettel dove into the pits as did Felipe Massa who had also recieved a puncture after making contact with his teammate. Both drivers dropped to the back of the field. And Vettel's hopes back-to-back victories in Silverstone were gone.


Meanwhile, Webber was cruising in the lead over hometown favorite, Lewis Hamilton. Vettel had made ground though. He had passed "the string of Germans" as Sebastian described as the group of 5 cars all carried German drivers. Sebastian was in seventh but didn't look as if he would be able to pass the Sauber of Kobayashi.


Webber won the race from Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg. It turned his mood rightside up and his position in the championship ahead of Vettel's which would be good just in case another one of those front wing controversies ever happened again.





ABOVE: Jenson Button looked to take his seventh win of the season at home turf.


When the 2009 calendar reached Silverstone, Jenson Button was in a similar position as Vettel this year. He had won six of the first seven races and was looking to win on home turf. But signs didn't look so good when he had a disastrous qualifying. He only managed sixth, his worst starting position of the year.


Red Bull's Sebastian Vettel took the pole for the second straight race. Rubens Barrichello qualified 2nd to prevent a front row lockout for Red Bull and give Brawn a better chance of the win. Lewis Hamilton did even worse than Button. He hadn't been able to get the speed out the McLaren at pretty much every race. He qualified in P18. The man on the last grid slot wasn't a surprise but what Sutil had to go through in Q1 was what was spetacular. He had slammed into the wall tearing apart his car. The German driver was all right and was cleared to start the race but the Force India team had a lot of work to do to get the car ready to start the race.


BELOW: Sutil had crashed hard but was fine after the high-speed incident



On race day, all the cars lined up on the grid, even Sutil. A surprise in P5 was Nakajima making the best start of his career. When the race got underway Vettel pulled away. Barrichello was able to hold off Webber but Trulli made a bad start from fourth and dropped to 7th place. Hamilton made up four positions but dropped down to last after his stop.


d09gbr1532.jpgVettel only lost the lead when he stopped for gas. He was in control of the race ahead of his teammate and Barrichello. But the big surprise was still Button. He was in sixth place and didn't look as if he would pass Rosberg in front. This would be his worst finish of the year so far. For the second time in 2009, Sebastian Vettel beat Button to the win and a memorable one it was proving that not only was Seb the king of the wet, he was the king of the dry too. The win would allow him to close the gap on Button and give him one more winner's trophies!






ABOVE: Vettel crosses the chequered flag to win in Silverstone.




In 2008, there was a different front row than usual. Kovalainen was the fastest driver in qualifying an he was able to lock out his first pole postion of his Formula 1 career and got the advantage of starting first on the grid. Mark Webber gave his Red Bull team a smile by putting the car on the second position on the starting grid. The result was good and now they were set up for a podium. The title contenders were behind with Raikkonen in P3 and Hamilton, P4. Felipe Massa had to do with ninth on the grid.


d08gbr1496.jpgAt the start of the race, Webber had spun, throwing all the chances he had of a podium in the garbage can. He rejoined the race in last position. Meanwhile a good battle was up front. Hamilton had pulled up alongside his polesitting teammate, Kovalainen. The Finn got the better of the battle for the moment at least. On Lap 5, Hamilton passed Heikki and flew into the rainy distance. He was flying.


LEFT: Kovalainen and Webber lead the grid at the start of the race


Heidfeld in the BMW Sauber was doing a good job as well. He was in second place ahead of Rubens Barrichello in the Honda. It was a good effort by both drivers despite being several seconds behind the leader, Hamilton.


For Hamilton, it was the drive of his life. It was absolute domination. He was he king of the race. He had lapped all but the two other podium finishers and second placed Heidfeld was 68 seconds behind. It was another exciting race at Silverstone and there was total domination shown by the champion-to-be.


BELOW: Alonso and Kovalainen battle in the wet at Silverstone.


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Comment on this post

tommyh 07/05/2011 15:06

One more item .......... Hamilton was quoted in the press that he is talking to Red Bull about a spot on their team when his contract with McLaren-Mercedes expires. What do you think about that,

tommyh 07/05/2011 15:00

Great photos from you archive, KD !!

Kevdawg 07/09/2011 05:10

Thanks tommy