It may not have been a race to remember but it was a master class from Lewis Hamilton in how to push and use your brain at the same time, which shows how far he has come this season.
Hamilton was quickest in all three qualifying sessions on Saturday and kept his cool on race day despite being under pressure from both Lotus cars, who finally delivered their promised pace this weekend.
Romain Grosjean started the race right alongside Hamilton on the front row in a career best P2, while his team mate, ex-world champion Kimi Raikkonen, lined up in P5.
However by the end of the race it was Raikkonen who was bringing the fight to Hamilton, although he never found the pace to make a move on the Brit. The Lotus teams will still be very happy with their results this weekend, as both drivers ended up finishing in P2 and P3.
Even with DRS, overtaking was minimal this weekend, by my count there were less than 20 actual on-track passes, meaning most of the position changes happened thanks to pit stops. The Hungaroring is traditionally known as one of the tracks where it is challenging to overtake, but even by that standard this was a low number of passes.
This made pit stop planning even more critical, and Jenson Button was an example of what a badly timed pit can do to a race. The McLaren driver began the race in P4 and managed to jump Vettel to P3 at turn four, right at the start of the race. However reacting to pressure from the Red Bull, the team pulled Button in for a pit stop on lap 35, in the hope of shaking off Vettel and jumping him during the stops. Unfortunately despite a break-neck tyre change of 2.9 seconds, Jenson fed out the pit lane right behind the Williams of Bruno Senna and was stuck there.
This freed up current world champion Vettel to run in clear air and post some blistering lap times, so when he pitted four laps later he came out in front of Button. Thanks to being stuck behind Senna, any hope of Button finishing on the podium was lost and he finished the race in sixth place.
It must be said that Senna was under no obligation to let the Brit pass. At the time he was racing for position and more, for speculation is rife that the nephew of the late great Ayrton Senna is competing for his Williams seat next season after some disappointing results. He has failed to bring home any points in five of the 11 races so far this year.
Both the Williams cars started the race in the top 10 this weekend however, and Senna managed to cross the finish line in P7. His team mate Pastor Maldonado had a less successful race as in his now traditional aggressive style he forced a car off the track, clipping Paul Di Resta as he tried to pass him on lap 48. The move earned Maldonado a drive-through penalty and he could only manage a P13 finish, out of the points.
Paul Di Resta seemed undamaged by the contact but the Force India pace seemed to be lacking this weekend, as both he and Nico Hulkenberg could only manage a P12 and P11 finish respectively. The Scot also didn't manage to make it into the final qualifying session and was out qualified by Hulkenberg for the fourth race in a row, something he will definitely be hoping to rectify when the sport returns after its summer break.
The award for the worst race weekend however has to go to Mercedes, and in particular Michael Schumacher. Schumacher and Nico Rosberg only managed to qualify in P17 and P13 on Saturday.
Then the seven-time world champion bizarrely seemed to turn his engine off when the cars lined up to start the race after the formation lap. Admittedly the warning lights were flashing over the start/finish line but no-one else seemed to make this school-boy error. As the cars circled the track again, Schumacher had to be pushed to start his race from the pit lane.
To add insult to injury, in his hurry to get to the pit exit Schumacher inadvertently went too fast and was slapped with a drive through penalty for speeding in the pits. This saw him right at the back of the pack all over again, and nine laps from the end of the race the German retired from 18th place. Rosberg only managed to finish in P10.
It has been said that the Mercedes cars prefer cooler conditions and with track temperatures in the forties, maybe it was the heat that didn't agree with them. Whatever the reason, it was a weekend to forget for Mercedes in Hungary.
The Ferrari's also had a quiet weekend after the dominance of Fernando Alonso just last weekend in Germany. It just shows you how a track, upgrades or even the weather can change the fortunes of a race. Hamilton, who retired in Germany after a disaster race, took the top podium step this weekend, and Alonso, who won in Hockenheim last weekend, seemed to struggle to keep up with the front runners this week.
The Spaniard lined up on the starting grid in P6 with his team mate Felipe Massa just behind in P7, and despite a sterling effort from Alonso he could only manage a P5 finish. However he is still 40 points clear at the top of the drivers’ championship thanks to the points he bagged; a nice birthday present to the driver who turned 31 on Sunday.
Massa crossed the line 12 seconds behind Alonso in P9. As ever, the rumours about the Brazilian's seat at the team were rife this weekend, this time saying Ferrari have now told him they will not be renewing his contract after this year. There has been no official announcement on this, however.
The Red Bulls were the focus of more off-track controversy in Hungary as it emerged that back at the Canadian GP in June, the FIA told the team to change their front suspension after they discovered they could alter the ride height by hand. The rules state that suspension changes can only be made using a tool.
Red Bull insist they do use a tool to alter the ride height, however the very fact that they CAN change the suspension without one has raised some eyebrows.
The rule is there to ensure that between qualifying and the race the teams can't change the car, another FIA regulation. If the Red Bull team were able to change the suspension on their cars without anyone knowing this would give them a significant advantage above the other teams as they would be able to perfectly set their cars for both the low fuel qualifying and high fuel races. Something they are not supposed to be able to do.
Red Bull has dismissed the news as a "non-issue" and categorically state that they have never changed the ride height when in parc ferme conditions.
The team had only just closed another FIA argument last weekend; that one over their engine mapping system. The team were allowed to race with their system in Germany due to a loophole in the wording of the rule, but on Wednesday the FIA rewrote the regulation and Red Bull were forced to change it for this weekend.
As the sport enters its month-long summer break, the drivers and teams who are lagging behind will use the time looking at how they can improve, while there will definitely be a good mental boost for Hamilton and the McLaren team who have been lagging behind the other front runners for the last few races.
Lotus can also be proud of their result with and both teams will be hoping to keep up the form when F1 returns at the end of August.
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