Last time out at Silverstone, Mercedes World Champion and current Driver’s Championship leader Lewis Hamilton gave the home crowd the perfect weekend as he not only claimed victory, but also the fastest lap in the race to earn the extra point on offer and ensure that he bounced back to form with a brilliant display in front of his fervent support.
Hamilton has now opened up a large lead over team-mate Valtteri Bottas in the Driver’s World Championship and both Mercedes drivers are well clear of Max Verstappen in third and the two Ferrari drivers, Sebastian Vettel and Charles Leclerc who are behind the lone Red Bull star.
In truth it has been a dominant season for both Hamilton and Mercedes. The German constructors have won nine of the ten races contested so far this season and of those, Hamilton has won seven. With Mercedes now in front of their home fans and on their home track, the expectation is that the team and its drivers will dominate this weekend’s German Grand Prix as they did in Great Britain a couple of weeks ago.
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Just how dominant have Mercedes and their driver’s been this season? A quick look at the current standings in the major championships in F1 will easily show you that.
Current F1 Standings (2019 Season – After British Grand Prix)
- Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes) – 223
- Valtteri Bottas (Mercedes) – 184
- Max Verstappen (Red Bull) – 136
- Sebastian Vettel (Ferrari) – 123
- Charles Leclerc (Ferrari) – 120
- Pierre Gasly (Red Bull) – 55
- Carlos Sainz Jr (McLaren) – 38
- Kimi Raikkonen (Alfa Romeo) – 25
- Lando Norris (McLaren) – 22
- Daniel Ricciardo (Renault) – 22
- Nico Hulkenberg (Renault) – 17
- Kevin Magnussen (Haas) – 14
- Sergio Perez (Racing Point) – 13
- Danil Kvyat (Toro Rosso) – 12
- Alexander Albon (Toro Rosso) – 7
- Lance Stroll (Racing Point) – 6
- Romain Grosjean (Haas) – 2
- Antonio Giovanazzi (Alfa Romeo) – 1
- George Russell (Williams) – 0
- Robert Kubica (Williams) – 0
- Mercedes – 407
- Ferrari – 243
- Red Bull – 191
- McLaren – 60
- Renault – 39
- Alfa Romeo – 26
- Racing Point – 19
- Toro Rosso – 19
- Haas – 16
- Williams – 0
Fastest Lap Winners
The driver setting the fastest lap during each race of the season (not in qualifying) earns 1 championship point. This is in addition to any of the points the driver earns in the race.
- Australia – Valtteri Bottas (Mercedes)
- Bahrain – Charles Leclerc (Ferrari)
- China – Pierre Gasly (Red Bull)
- Azerbaijan – Charles Leclerc (Ferrari)
- Spain – Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes)
- Monaco – Pierre Gasly (Red Bull)
- Canada – Valtteri Bottas (Mercedes)
- France – Sebastian Vettel (Ferrari)
- Austria – Max Vestappen (Red Bull)
- Great Britain – Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes)
German Grand Prix Facts and Figures
- Rudolf Caracciola is the record holder in terms of race wins at the German Grand Prix with six, although his wins came in the 1920s and 1930s and some in races that were not part of the official F1 calendar.
- After Caracciola, Michael Schumacher and Lewis Hamilton are next on the roll of honour with four wins apiece.
- Six drivers have managed three wins in the race, Alberto Ascari, Juan Manuel Fangio, Jackie Stewart, Nelson Piquet, Ayrton Senna and Fernando Alonso.
- Of those drivers, four have won the race in successive years, Alberto Ascari, Juan Manuel Fangio and Ayrton Senna. Lewis Hamilton will join this group if he wins this years race.
- The race is held at the newly designed Hockenheim Ring, which is radically different, slower with more corners than the circuit that was used prior to the 2002 redesign.
- Only two drivers in the current field, Hamilton and Vettel, have won the German Grand Prix previously.
- Ferrari have the most wins in the race with 22, double the 11 wins that Mercedes have managed to land. Williams are next on the list with 9 wins and McLaren are 4th with 8.
- As well as competing, Mercedes are also the sponsor of this years race.
- Capacity – 120,000
- Opened – 1932
- Length – 4.574 Kilometers (2.842 miles)
- Turns – 17
- Lap Record – 1.13.780 (Kimi Raikkonen, McLaren 2004)
- Famous sections – Parabolika, Hairpin, Mercedes, Sachs, SudKurve, NordKurve.
German Grand Prix – Prediction
- Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes)
- Valtteri Bottas (Mercedes)
- Max Verstappen (Red Bull)
It’s no surprise that we have gone for a Mercedes 1-2 in Hockenheim. Hamilton and Bottas both look to be by far the fastest two drivers on the track most weekends and the fact the Mercedes is usually so reliable, allied to the fact that Hamilton has been the outstanding driver by a considerable margin this season and indeed over the past five years, means that it is hard to see anybody making a real inroad into the dominance of the top two.
More interesting to me is who will come third. Ordinarily, I would have selected Vettel to land the third spot on the podium with it being his home race, but I think the German has looked a little demotivated in recent races. That decision in Canada to strip him of the win and award it to Hamilton was harsh and in truth, it seems as if Vettel has not got a chip on his shoulder, if not with the lack of pace from himself and his team, then with FIA itself.
That means that Leclerc and Verstappen are the ones to watch for me and I think Verstappen just has the edge. I think Ferrari’s car is marginally better than the Red Bull, but I think Verstappen is such a talented and fearless driver that he can make up that gap and in doing so, I think he will be the one to land the third place in the table this weekend in Germany.