Lewis Hamilton has won the Russian Grand Prix more times than anyone else, and it isn’t even close. So it was only fitting that this was the place where he would claim his 100th career win and become the winningest driver in the history of F1. Although this didn’t come easy or without drama.
Hamilton started Sunday’s Russian GP from grid number four but soon found himself at the sixth position following a bad start. With a timely pit stop and excellent driving, the Mercedes driver managed to get to second place but still had McLaren’s Lando Norris ahead of him. Then, four laps before the end of the race, the rain started.
Hamilton immediately entered the pit stop and changed his tires to intermediate, while Norris decided to take a risk and stay on dry tires. But this would soon prove to be a costly mistake, as Norris couldn’t keep his car in check on the wet tarmac and ended up sliding off the track, which Hamilton used in his favor and took the lead on lap 51.
Hamilton finished first with more than 53 seconds ahead of the second-placed Max Verstappen from Red Bull. Norris had to be content with the number seven finish.
“It’s taken a long time to obviously get to 100, and I wasn’t even sure whether or not it would come,” Hamilton said in the post-race interview. “Lando did such an amazing job. He had incredible pace.”
The win helped Lewis Hamilton jump over Verstappen and sit at the top of F1 Driver Standings for the 2021 season with 246.5 points. Verstappen, who finished second after starting from the back of the grid, has 244.5 points.