- Williams complete the DHL Fastest Pit Stop of the Hungarian GP
- Sergey Sirotkin is dispatched in 2.10 seconds
- Red Bull Racing lead the DHL Fastest Pit Stop Award
Williams execute DHL Fastest Pit Stop in Budapest
Williams, who won the DHL Fastest Pit Stop Award in 2016, were back on top form in the last race before the summer break. The illustrious team completed the fastest pit stop of the Hungarian Grand Prix in a time of 2.10 seconds and the second-fastest tire change of the current F1 season.
Williams already have one DHL Fastest Pit Stop to their credit this season, namely the Azerbaijan Grand Prix in Baku when Lance Stroll was turned around quickest in Race 4 of the campaign, but this time it was his team-mate Sergey Sirotkin who benefited from superfast service. Despite the heroics of his pit crew, the Russian rookie finished a lowly 15th outside the points.
Because it had rained in qualifying, the Top Ten drivers on the grid were also free to choose their tires. While pole-sitter Lewis Hamilton, Valtteri Bottas and Kimi Räikkönen went for Ultrasoft, Sebastian Vettel chose Softs for his first stint.
The Ferrari driver overtook his team-mate Räikkönen early on and was in third position for most of the race. Hamilton was meanwhile pulling out a comfortable gap that enabled him to cruise to victory. Behind him, Vettel and Bottas in P2 were engaged in a long-range duel. Because he was on the softer compound, the Mercedes driver stopped as early as Lap 15 to make the switch to Softs. By contrast, Vettel made his one and only stop on Lap 39, at which point he switched to Ultrasofts.
The overcut by the German almost paid off, because he had built up a healthy lead over Bottas which should theoretically have been enough to bring him out ahead after the tire change. However, the Ferrari crew were having an off day and took 4.22 seconds to release Vettel; this brought him back out on the track just behind Bottas.
In the final stages of the race, Vettel gradually tightened the screw on Bottas. When it was time for the inevitable overtaking move, the two drivers collided. While Vettel escaped without damage, Bottas ruined his car and ultimately fell back to fifth place.
One other beneficiary of this collision was Kimi Räikkönen, who came through to take the third podium spot. The veteran Finn was the only one of the top drivers to try a two-stop strategy, but the Ferrari crew let him down too. Räikkönen’s first stop was a sluggish 5.18 seconds, though his next tire change was a more respectable 2.52 seconds.
Top 10 pit stops in the FORMULA 1 ROLEX MAGYAR NAGYDÍJ 2018
- Sergey Sirotkin (Williams) - 2.10s
- Daniel Ricciardo (Red Bull) - 2.22s
- Pierre Gasly (Toro Rosso) - 2.27s
- Lance Stroll (Williams) - 2.36s
- Valtteri Bottas (Mercedes) - 2.51s
- Kimi Räikkönen (Ferrari) - 2.52s
- Romain Grosjean (Haas) - 2.67s
- Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes) - 2.72s
- Stoffel Vandoorne (McLaren) - 2.73s
- Brendon Hartley (Toro Rosso) - 2.79s
Fastest Pit Stop Award: Red Bull still in the lead
Red Bull Racing go into the summer break leading the 2018 DHL Fastest Pit Stop Award. The Bulls are 321 points in credit, which puts them way ahead of the opposition. Some distance behind in second place are Ferrari on 181 points, followed by Mercedes and Sauber, each on 161.