Lewis Hamilton managed his tires quite well yesterday in Mexico to edge close rival Bottas and Ferrari driver Sebastian Vettel in to get closer to the much coveted Driver’s championship.
With the Constructors championship already done and sealed for the Mercedes, it is now their two drivers Bottas and Hamilton going at each other to try and clinch the driver’s championship.
Lewis Hamilton won the Mexican Grand Prix with a superbly controlled drive in a tactical fight with Ferrari to move to the brink of the world title.
Hamilton will clinch his sixth championship at the US Grand Prix next Sunday as long as he does not lose more than 22 points to Mercedes team-mate Valtteri Bottas.
Hamilton triumphed in a tense, slow-burn race of divergent strategies between the four Mercedes and Ferrari drivers.
Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel was second after failing to make advantage of his pitting strategy, ahead of Bottas and Charles Leclerc who was within range of overtaking Bottas before he went off the track and lost the ground he had created on the Finn.
While Mercedes could congratulate themselves on gambling on a one-stop strategy with a long second stint to gain track position on Vettel and then hold off the German to the end, there will be questions over Ferrari’s decisions.
The Italian team twice gave up the lead, first with pole position winner Charles Leclerc, who was pitted out of first position after 15 laps to stick to a two-stop strategy decided before the race.
And Vettel took his strategy into his own hands to decide to do the same when Hamilton made his stop.
Ferrari had the chance to pit on the next lap and retain the lead, but Vettel suggested they “leave him to it”, a decision that meant they would stop later and try to come back at Hamilton at the end of the race on fresher tyres.
Vettel had tyres that were 14 laps fresher than Hamilton’s for the climax to the race, but the reigning champion was more than capable of holding the Ferrari back.
Driver of the day was Max Verstappen who had to maneuver the midfield to get into the top 6 positions after such a disastrous start to the race.
His team-mate Alex Albon kept the pressure on at the top as well as they continued to accumulate points for the constructors that puts them right behind Ferrari.
Author: Moses Echodu
Moses is a freelance writer for Newslibre and Programs Manager at the Craft Silicon Foundation. He loves writing about sports, politics and news around the globe and Inspiring new young people!!