Ricciardo wins Hungarian Grand Prix
Ricciardo wins Hungarian Grand Prix

Daniel Ricciardo of Red Bull overtook Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso near the end of the race to win a thrilling Hungarian Grand Prix on Sunday, his second Formula One victory of the season and his career.

Lewis Hamilton, who started from pit lane after his engine caught on fire during qualifying, was third, holding off Mercedes teammate Nico Rosberg, who started from pole position.

Ricciardo, an Australian competing in his fourth Formula One season, made three pits stops - compared to just two for Alonso and Hamilton - and his newer set of tires paid off in the end as he surged past the leaders with three laps to go.

“We had the fresher tires but I knew it was going to be an exciting finish,” Ricciardo said. “That was a lot of fun, the last few laps.

“I am definitely going to celebrate tonight, party for a few days and enjoy a few days off,” he added.

Ricciardo won his first F1 race at the Canadian Grand Prix in Montreal in June.

Rosberg still leads the championship with 202 points, followed by Hamilton with 191 and Ricciardo with 131.

Mercedes told Hamilton to let Rosberg pass him as the race was winding down, but Hamilton said he saw no reason to obey team orders considering his good position at the time.

“I was very, very shocked that the team would ask me to do that,” Hamilton said. Rosberg “did get close enough to overtake but I was never going to lift off and lose ground to Fernando or Daniel to enable him to have a good race.”

“That was a bit strange,” he added.

Hamilton also started from pit lane at last week’s German Grand Prix and moved all the way up to finish third.

The British driver said his last two performances were “definitely much more satisfying” than even a win achieved from pole position.

Alonso, the only driver to score points at every race so far this season, was pleased with getting back on the podium this year. He was also third at the Chinese Grand Prix in Shanghai in April.

“I am happy and proud of the job done,” the Spaniard said. “It was probably one of the few podiums we will achieve this season. We can go on vacation now with a good taste in our mouths.”

A rain shower just before the start made conditions difficult at the beginning of the race. Several drivers crashed, including Sebastien Grosjean and Kamui Kobayashi.

The championship continues after the summer break on Aug. 24 with the Belgian Grand Prix in Spa-Francorchamps.

AAP

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