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British Grand Prix 2021

Italian media: 'Bad guy' Hamilton rewarded in the end

There are two things being discussed in Italy after the British GP: the battle between Max Verstappen/Lewis Hamilton and Charles Leclerc's phenomenal performance. The press in Italy couldn't help but see parallels to Ayrton Senna and Alain Prost.

Hamilton Silverstone 2021
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To news overview © Mercedes

While Charles Leclerc's sparkling display at the British GP didn't go unnoticed amongst the Italian press, it's no surprise the high-speed incident between Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton garnered much of the attention.

The Briton took the chequered flag, passing Leclerc in the closing stages of the race after the Ferrari driver led from the opening lap. That was made possible by Verstappen and Hamilton's collision at Copse corner, which drew parallels to the famous incidents involving Ayrton Senna and Alain Prost in Japan all those years ago.

"Hamilton takes out Verstappen and then wins his home race to reopen the battle for the championship," was the Corriere dello Sport headline. "The duel reminds us of the tough battle between Senna and Prost in the 1990 Japanese GP.

"It's true that F1's living room is full of 'bad guys', and in this case the 'bad guy' Lewis was rewarded with victory."

As for La Gazzetta dello Sport, the publication had a tamer view of the incident while highlighting just how close Leclerc came to victory.

"We saw a great battle between the two leaders in the fight for the championship, but it was over before it even started," read the Italian outlet. "The battle continued off-track however, with statements from both Mercedes and Red Bull.

"The fact is that Hamilton was allowed to continue and was able to beat an impressive Leclerc in the end. The Ferrari driver was so close to victory, but the race lasted two laps too long for the Monegasque."

			© Mercedes
	© Mercedes

It's only when Gazzetta handed out their grades for the race that they let their thoughts about the incident known.

"Verstappen didn't back down from the battle with Hamilton and stayed on the accelerator," the publication continued. "This time it turned out badly for the Dutchman who flew off track, though he was the one who had the most to lose in the fight.

"Niki Lauda would have thought about stepping off the gas if he were in that position, but Verstappen is like Gilles Villeneuve (who is still praised in Italy for his all-or-nothing mentality). At the same time Hamilton gets an eight as the incident with Verstappen took some shine off the Briton's performance.

"The Mercedes driver misbehaved but was lucky, showing he is ready to give everything to win the title."

Lastly, La Repubblica hailed Hamilton's victory at Silverstone, the eighth of his career on home soil.

"Hamilton remains the king of Silverstone," was La Repubblica's headline. "Verstappen was sent off track due to an incident with Hamilton and people will talk about it in the coming weeks and months.

"Hamilton flew in aggressively at the start and Verstappen seemed to be able to keep him at bay. However at Copse things went wrong for the Dutchman and he ended up in the barrier. As a result Hamilton is back in contention for the championship, aided by the fact that Ferrari couldn't take full advantage of the incident between the two top drivers.

"For a moment the Scuderia dreamed of taking victory again, but in the end it was the seven-time World Champion who managed to win despite a 10-second penalty."

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F1 2021 British Grand Prix RN365 News dossier

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