Hamilton limited the damage, but Ferrari are the real winners

Toto Wolff knows how to get the best out of Lewis Hamilton

Vettel then passed Bottas five laps from the end, with the Finn's tyres fading, and Hamilton was also through a lap later and the chase was on to the finish with the German winning by 2.2 seconds.

A fifth consecutive home victory would have beaten Jim Clark's streak of four and his sixth win overall would have moved him beyond Clark and Alain Prost's record of five. However, he was playing catch-up from as early as the third turn of the race, with Kimi Raikkonen locking his front wheel and sliding into Hamilton's rear, causing the Mercedes to spin.

Just a week after a major update at Mercedes helped the German vehicle manufacturer deliver a pace change in Austria, Ferrari's own developments appeared to make the difference at Silverstone.

"We are leaving with the British flag to hang in Maranello", he added.

Valtteri Bottas described his final laps of the British Grand Prix as if it were "like driving on ice" as he tried to fend off Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel for the race win.

Raikkonen accepted fault for the collision after the race and said his penalty was deserved.

By the end of lap three, Hamilton was 14th.

Ferrari brushed off the complaints, but the gloves are now off between the two teams.

Bottas would assume the lead from Vettel, with Hamilton now third.

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The race was neutralised again moments later for an accident at Copse between Carlos Sainz Jr and Romain Grosjean, when Sainz attacked on the outside but Grosjean suffered a wobble at the apex.

The four-time champion seized the lead at the start and fought back after losing the initiative during two safety auto periods to register his second win at Silverstone and the 51st of his career.

Hamilton had started on pole after a terrific drive saw him pip his Ferrari rivals in qualifying.

"But now looking back for sure for the result it would have been better to stop".

But in a post to Instagram, Minttu Raikkonen, who has been married to the Finnish driver since 2016, wrote: "If you cry like a girl when you lose, do ballet".

Ferrari and Red Bull both took the chance to change their tyres but Mercedes opted to leave their drivers out on the track.

The appearance of the safety auto on the 33rd of 52 laps, after Sauber's Marcus Ericsson crashed at Abbey, was greeted with a huge cheer from the 140,500 crowd who had already cheered Hamilton's every overtake. "What we need to understand is where can we improve and where can we engineer". Hamilton stopped for new tyres after 25 laps and dropped back to sixth.

The Briton appeared drained by the effort, and deeply unimpressed by a first-lap collision with Ferrari's Kimi Raikkonen that sent him spinning to the back.

Bottas started to further close the gap to Vettel over the next few laps, bringing it down to 2.4sec when Marcus Ericsson triggered a safety vehicle on lap 32. There was a delay before the Swede emerged from his vehicle, but the fact he did so apparently unharmed speaks volumes for the improvements in safety in F1. That's why he was getting close to me out of slow-speed corners and getting DRS.

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