Autosport (UK)

STRONG MCLAREN MISSES PODIUM FINISH

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A first British Grand Prix podium since 2010 looked possible for Mclaren early on following the Max Verstappen/lewis Hamilton clash, but pitstop woe took Lando Norris out of the equation.

A strong Grand Prix race start aided his ascent into third, and Norris gamely kept Valtteri Bottas at bay. But Norris was forced to endure a longer wait switching his medium tyres for the hard compound, losing four seconds to Bottas due to a cross-threaded wheelnut.

The Mercedes driver pounced on the delay a lap later by pitting and returning to the circuit ahead of Norris, although the two were briefly close. Bottas quickly passed the yet-to-stop Fernando Alonso to pull enough of a gap between himself and the 21-year-old.

Daniel Ricciardo, meanwhile, enjoyed a race-long battle with Carlos Sainz Jr over fifth place, although he received a good dose of pitstop-related fortune to finish ahead. Ricciardo held the advantage before the pitstop phase, but Sainz’s medium tyre stint was longer, and he looked set to overcut the Australian. A slow stop for the Ferrari driver due to a wheelgun sensor problem eliminated the advantage, leaving Sainz having to try to pass Ricciardo late on to no avail, even with the aid of DRS.

“On the hard tyre, it was even more difficult to overtake him,” Sainz rued. “I was understeer­ing a lot more, and I couldn’t keep up with him at high speed.”

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