Max Verstappen took a stunning win at the German Grand Prix as the Red Bull driver managed to keep his cool in a chaotic wet weather race at Hockenheim. Joining him on the podium were Sebastian Vettel of Ferrari, who took an astonishing second place at his home race after starting last on the grid, and Daniil Kvyat of Toro Rosso brought the team's second ever podium in an equally spectacular manner as the other two podium finishers.
Saying that the German GP was crazy will be a bit of an understatement. The race saw four safety car periods and multiple crashes, thanks to wet and tricky conditions at the track. In fact, only 14 drivers managed to bring their cars home safe at the end of the race. The race began in a usual manner though, as reigning world champion Lewis Hamilton led the proceedings from pole position, followed by teammate Valtteri Bottas. Verstappen struggled to make a good start, but managed to recover soon.
Hamilton looked in control in the first half of the race, but his misfortunes began when he ran off wide in the final corner, damaging his car. The very same corner claimed Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc as he ended his race in the barriers a lap ago at the very same spot. Hamilton, however, managed to dive to the pits to change the damaged front wing, but he lost a lot of time sitting in the pits as he caught his team unprepared. Not to mention, Hamilton was awarded a five-second penalty later on for entering the pits on the wrong side of the bollard at entrance.
At the front, Verstappen was in total control at front, but the remaining two podium spots were still up for grabs. Surprisingly, Racing Points’ Lance Stroll has a shot at it in the closing laps, as he was the first one to put slick tyres in a drying race. He led the race briefly but was passed by Verstappen when the Red Bull driver among others switched to slicks. Stroll was now coming under pressure from Bottas, but the Mercedes driver made a costly mistake as he spun and crashed into the barriers while chasing the Racing Points car.
Bottas crash brought the Safety Car out again on lap 57 of 64. Vettel benefitted from this the most as he had superior pace in the closing stages and he managed to walk past others from P5 to claim the second spot in front of his home crowd. Kvyat kept his cool and took the third spot.
Stroll finished in fourth, ahead of McLaren’s Carlos Sainz, while Alexander Albon gave Toro Rosso more reasons to cheer with a sixth place finish. Alfa Romeo’s Kimi Raikkonen and teammate Antonio Giovinazzi finished in seventh and eighth, respectively. However, they were awarded a 30 sec penalty each post the race for breaking the rules over the team’s clutch usage at race start.
The penalties of both drivers promoted Haas driver Romain Grosjean to seventh place and teammate Kevin Magnussen to eighth place. Hamilton finished in points in ninth place while Robert Kubica’s 10th place meant Williams scored their first point of the 2019.