Lewis Hamilton has won the Austrian Grand Prix for the first time in controversial circumstances. The British driver collided with Mercedes team mate Nico Rosberg on the final lap to claim a third win of the year.
Hamilton overtook Mercedes team mate Nico Rosberg on the final lap to win the Austrian Grand Prix in dramatic and controversial fashion. It was the Briton’s third triumph in the last four races and moved him to within 11 points of championship leader Rosberg in the overall standings.
The pair collided during the maneuver, Rosberg trying to prevent the pass by pushing Hamilton wide. Rosberg’s wing was damaged in the collision and he eventually limped to fourth behind Red Bull’s Max Verstappen in second and Ferrari’s Kimi Raikkonen in third.
“I was on the outside, it wasn’t me who crashed,” Hamilton, who was roundly booed by the Austrian fans on the podium, said on his team radio.
Stewards said they were investigating Rosberg over the collision and for continuing with a damaged car but the German appeared to blame Hamilton.
“I was inside. It was my curve,” he said. “I went a bit wide because of the (overheating) breaks. I was surprised he steered into me.”
Rosberg, who had won the Austrian Grand Prix in 2014 and 2015, took the lead after compatriot Sebastian Vettel crashed on lap 27. The Ferrari driver, who was celebrating his 29th birthday, hit a barrier on the inside of the pit wall after his right rear tire burst. It was the second time this season Vettel had to retire.
Hamilton’s win in Austria was the 250th Formula One victory for a British driver since the championship started in 1950. He has 142 points in second in the standings ahead of next weekend’s British Grand Prix, with Rosberg on 153. Nearest challengers Vettel and Raikkonen each have 96 points.
dv/ (AP, Reuters, DPA)