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Formula 1

Why pole position isn't key to British GP success

Max Verstappen will be gunning for a fourth consecutive victory this weekend at the British GP. Silverstone has proven to be a safe haven for Mercedes in the past, though whoever wins on Sunday doesn't necessarily have to start from pole.

To news overview © Pirelli

While drivers battle it out to claim pole position in a bid to improve their chances of victory on Sunday, over the years it hasn't played a big part in who wins the British GP at Silverstone.

So far in 2021, four of the nine races have been won by the pole sitter. Those numbers have been aided by Max Verstappen's recent run of three wins in a row, all of which came after finishing with the fastest time in qualifying.

Victory at Silverstone is even less dependant on starting from the front of the grid, as the pole sitter has won just eight of the last 26 editions of the British GP. Lewis Hamilton has four of those results, taking pole and the chequered flag in 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2020.

He also leads the way in terms of all-time poles at Silverstone with seven, all of which have come with Mercedes power as the first was while driving for McLaren-Mercedes. In fact, Mercedes have been the team to beat on Saturday at the event for years, with Fernando Alonso the last non-Mercedes driver to take pole back in 2012 for Ferrari.

Last season saw Hamilton win the British GP, however the 70th Anniversary Gp was also held at Silverstone and saw Max Verstappen take the chequered flag. Honda haven't won back-to-back races at Silverstone since the late 1980s when Ayrton Senna and Alain Prost did so for McLaren.

The Dutchman will certainly be tested given Mercedes have won seven of the last nine races held at the circuit, with Verstappen's triumph last season and Sebastian Vettel's in 2018 the lone exceptions.

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F1 2021 British Grand Prix RN365 News dossier


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