Lewis Hamilton makes it lucky number seven as he cuts a dash to victory in Canada

Another race, another winner as McLaren driver goes top of world championship standings


Lewis Hamilton was magnificent in dominating a supremely tense Canadian Grand Prix to become a record-setting seventh winner in seven races. The 2008 world champion celebrated driving one more race for McLaren than his idol Ayrton Senna – 97 to 96 – but his much-needed success was certainly earned the hard way.

Beaten with worrying ease by Sebastian Vettel in practice, he appeared doomed as the Red Bull driver led him and Fernando Alonso into the first corner, and began to pull menacingly away. But then the tide began to turn and it was Vettel who had to stop sooner for new tyres, on the 16th lap.

"The team did a really great job with the pit stops and the strategy," Hamilton said. "I was really surprised I was able to look after the tyres and still push. I closed up on Seb in the first stint and never thought they'd have such tyre degradation. It was a real pleasure, and very rare."

Hamilton followed Vettel in a lap later, Alonso a lap later still. That shuffled the pack, with the Spaniard now leading the Englishman and the German. But Hamilton wasn't in the mood to be dictated to. He'd so nearly stalled in his stop, but now he was on fire. He used his DRS rear wing to fly past Alonso on the 20th lap, then he started banking fastest laps one after the other to build a lead of around three seconds, depending on lapped traffic.

And so it became a chess match. Who could make their rubber last longer? On the 50th lap, Hamilton dived into the pits for another fresh set of the soft-compound tyres, but that was when it sank in to outside observers that Ferrari, now leading, and Red Bull, had been planning one-stop races. They weren't going to change tyres again. But could they go another 20 laps on tyres known to drop the driver over a cliff once they'd passed their best?

"I had feeling they were dropping back so quickly they were definitely doing a one-stop, I said it to the team and they agreed," said Hamilton. "I had to make my second stop, otherwise I would have fallen back further than they did. But after my second stop I was able to catch Fernando at 1.5s a lap, and the great thing here is that you can overtake. I got absolutely everything out of the car today."

If anyone tells you Formula One is both boring and artificial, show them this race. Hamilton had put British hearts into mouths as yet another McLaren pit stop went wrong, this time with a momentary delay in attaching the right rear wheel. When he rejoined, he was 11 seconds behind Alonso, and was urged by his team to "give it everything you've got".

He did that all right. Lap by lap he punched in ever faster laps, shrinking the gap each time as Vettel began to close in on Alonso until by lap 61 he was up on the German. By the 62nd second place had changed hands and now Alonso's eyes were bugging out as he watched his mirrors with hawklike concentration.

In his heart he knew he was doomed, but all round the 64th lap he somehow fended off the McLaren, placing the Ferrari just where he needed to in the chicanes and down to the hairpin. But a lap after he'd rebuffed a lunge Hamilton made in the hairpin, he was forced to surrender under DRS down the back straight.

It was the win he so sorely needed after a season of consistency but only three podium finishes, in which McLaren have generally had the fastest car but not always been able to make the most of it.

Coincidentally, it was their 300th race with sponsor Mobil 1, and the result lifts Hamilton back into the lead of the world championship by two points from Alonso. However, there was a poignant contrast in the McLaren camp, for Jenson Button had an appalling outing and finished a lapped 16th.

"It's still sinking in, that it's five years since I won for the first time here," Hamilton said. "That was one of the most enjoyable races I've had, and the feeling inside is like exploding, really incredible. If I continue to have this feeling for many, many years, it will be fantastic."

As Hamilton sped on to his historic triumph, the torture was far from over for Alonso. Vettel baled in the 63rd lap, diving into the pits for fresh tyres. But while he was doing that he was overtaken by the flying Frenchman, Romain Grosjean, and Mexico's Sergio Perez.

On the 66th lap the Frenchman's Lotus shoved Alonso down to third place, then Perez took his Sauber past the Ferrari to exact a measure of revenge after their duel in Malaysia. Vettel also overtook him before the end.




1 L Hamilton (GB) McLaren 1hr 32mins 29.586secs

2 R Grosjean (Fr) Lotus F1 Team 1:32:32.099

3 S Perez (Mex) Sauber-Ferrari 1:32:34.846

4 S Vettel (Ger) Red Bull 1:32:36.881

5 F Alonso (Sp) Ferrari 1:32:42.997

6 N Rosberg (Ger) Mercedes GP 1:32:43.428

7 M Webber (Aus) Red Bull 1:32:44.671

8 K Raikkonen (Fin) Lotus F1 Team 1:32:45.153

9 K Kobayashi (Japan) Sauber-Ferrari 1:32:54.018

10 F Massa (Br) Ferrari 1:32:54.858

11 P di Resta (GB) Force India 1:33:07.279

12 N Hulkenberg (Ger) Force India 1:33:15.822

13 P Maldonado (Ven) Williams 1:33:16.638

14 D Ricciardo (Aus) Scuderia Toro Rosso 1:33:34.061

15  J-E Vergne (Fr) Scuderia Toro Rosso at 1 lap

16 J Button (GB) McLaren at 1 lap 17BSenna (Br) Williams at

1 lap 18HKovalainen (Fin) Caterham at 1 lap 19VPetrov (Rus)

Caterham at 1 lap 20CPic (Fr) Marussia at 3 laps Not

classified; 21 T Glock (Ger) Marussia 56 laps completed; 22

MSchumacher (Ger) Mercedes GP 43 laps completed; 23 P

de la Rosa (Sp) HRT-F1 24 laps completed; 24NKarthikeyan

(India) HRT-F1 22 laps completed.

Drivers Championship Standings

1 L Hamilton (GB)McLaren 88pts; 2 F Alonso (Sp) Ferrari 86; 3 S Vettel (Ger) Red Bull 85; 4 M Webber (Aus) Red Bull 79; 5 N Rosberg(Ger) Mercedes GP 67; 6 K Raikkonen (Fin) Lotus F1 Team 55; 7 R Grosjean (Fr) Lotus F1 Team 53; 8 J Button (GB) McLaren 45; 9 S Perez(Mex) Sauber-Ferrari 37.

Denny Miller in 1959 remake of Tarzan, the Ape Man
Arts and Entertainment
Cheryl despairs during the arena auditions
tvX Factor review: Drama as Cheryl and Simon spar over girl band

Piers Morgan tells Scots they might not have to suffer living on the same island as him if they vote ‘No’ to Scottish Independence
i100Exclusive interview with the British analyst who helped expose Bashar al-Assad's use of Sarin gas
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Angel Di Maria celebrates his first goal for Manchester United against QPR
Football4-0 victory is team's first win under new manager Louis van Gaal
Arts and Entertainment
newsIn short, yes
Arts and Entertainment
Rob James-Collier, who plays under-butler Thomas Barrow, admitted to suffering sleepless nights over the Series 5 script
tv'Thomas comes right up to the abyss', says the actor
Arts and Entertainment
Calvin Harris claimed the top spot in this week's single charts
BoxingVideo: The incident happened in the very same ring as Tyson-Holyfield II 17 years ago
Groundskeeper Willie has backed Scottish independence in a new video
Arts and Entertainment
The Doctor poses the question of whether we are every truly alone in 'Listen'
tvReview: Possibly Steven Moffat's most terrifying episode to date
Life and Style
Cara Delevigne at the TopShop Unique show during London Fashion Week
The life-sized tribute to Amy Winehouse was designed by Scott Eaton and was erected at the Stables Market in Camden
peopleBut quite what the singer would have made of her new statue...
England's Andy Sullivan poses with his trophy and an astronaut after winning a trip to space
peopleThe actress has agreed to host the Met Gala Ball - but not until 2015
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

These Iranian-controlled Shia militias used to specialise in killing American soldiers. Now they are fighting Isis, backed up by US airstrikes

Widespread fear of Isis is producing strange bedfellows

Iranian-controlled Shia militias that used to kill American soldiers are now fighting Isis, helped by US airstrikes
Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Shoppers don't come to Topshop for the unique
How to make a Lego masterpiece

How to make a Lego masterpiece

Toy breaks out of the nursery and heads for the gallery
Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Urbanites are cursed with an acronym pointing to Employed but No Disposable Income or Savings
Paisley’s decision to make peace with IRA enemies might remind the Arabs of Sadat

Ian Paisley’s decision to make peace with his IRA enemies

His Save Ulster from Sodomy campaign would surely have been supported by many a Sunni imam
'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

Exclusive extract from Janis Winehouse's poignant new memoir
Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

The Imitation Game, film review
England and Roy Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption in Basel

England and Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption

Welbeck double puts England on the road to Euro 2016
Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

Pictures removed from public view as courts decide ownership
‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

Donatella Versace at New York Fashion Week
The fall of Rome? Cash-strapped Italy accused of selling its soul to the highest bidder

The fall of Rome?

Italy's fears that corporate-sponsored restoration projects will lead to the Disneyfication of its cultural heritage
Glasgow girl made good

Glasgow girl made good

Kelly Macdonald was a waitress when she made Trainspotting. Now she’s taking Manhattan
Sequins ahoy as Strictly Come Dancing takes to the floor once more

Sequins ahoy as Strictly takes to the floor once more

Judy Murray, Frankie Bridge and co paired with dance partners
Wearable trainers and other sporty looks

Wearable trainers and other sporty looks

Alexander Wang pumps it up at New York Fashion Week
The landscape of my imagination

The landscape of my imagination

Author Kate Mosse on the place that taught her to tell stories