The action-packed Silverstone Grand Prix proved to be a successful one for local teams at the weekend, write Colin and James Beckett.
Nico Rosberg led the way at the wheel of his Brackley-based Mercedes AMG Petronas as the German, who scored his first victory of the season around the streets of Monaco in May, took full advantage of the misfortune of others to claim victory ahead of Mark Webber and Fernando Alonso.
Rosberg’s team, Lewis Hamilton, endured a far more dramatic race having started on pole after a blistering qualifying lap. The British driver dominated the early stages of the race but a tyre failure saw him drop to the back of the pack before he produced a storming drive to fight back and eventually finish fourth.
Meanwhile, Adrian Sutil led the Sahara Force India charge with a drive to seventh position.
The German racer scored his fourth top 10 finish of the season in a race taking place just metres from the Force India factory.
He said: “This is a good result for me and the team. We certainly had a strong package all weekend and I think if luck had played its part I could have been in the top three.”
Sutil’s team-mate, Paul di Resta, suffered indifferent fortunes throughout the weekend. The Scot was in sublime form in qualifying to record his career best position but that proved fruitless as he was relegated to the back of the field when his Force India was found to be underweight.
But once again the youngster showed his potential with a fine race to eventually finish ninth. He said: “This has been a weekend of highs and lows. Qualifying was great and I was so pleased. Then we had the weight issue and I had to start from the back. But the car went well and I scored some points – not as many as I would have liked, but at least I scored points.”
For the part Bicester-based Toro Rosso team, Daniel Ricciardo headed Free Practice on Friday but the Aussie failed to maintain that performance all weekend as he finished eighth.
Tipped for a Red Bull drive next year, Ricciardo said: “I love racing at Silverstone and it is pretty special. I live in Milton Keynes so this is very much my own Grand Prix. The team did a good job.”
Jean-Eric Vergne was the only driver of a car from the region not to finish in the point-scoring positions. The Frenchman was forced out on lap 35 when his Toro Rosso encountered mechanical problems.