Jolyon Palmer column: Lewis Hamilton makes winning in F1 look easy

Former F1 driver Jolyon Palmer, who left Renault during the 2017 season, is part of the BBC team and offers insight and analysis from the point of view of the competitors

The British Grand Prix was a momentous result for the World Championship.

Two weeks before in Austria, Valtteri Bottas chipped Lewis Hamilton’s lead down to 31 points. Had he beaten his Mercedes team-mate to victory at Silverstone it would have guaranteed the Finn brought the gap to within the 25 points drivers get for one race win.

When Bottas set pole on Saturday, he looked to have a very good chance to do exactly that.

Instead, Hamilton won yet again, at a canter, and not only extended his championship lead to 39 points – thanks to a last-gasp fastest lap as well – but understandably took huge delight in winning his home grand prix.

For Bottas, it was a major blow. He has had a good season, all in all, but Hamilton is just proving too good, and it’s hard to see a way back for Bottas from here.

It’s worth remembering that Bottas is a top driver, and earned his place at the front end of F1 by beating Felipe Massa consistently as team-mates at Williams.

He’s doing a very good job now as well – his Silverstone pole position was his fourth of the 10 races so far; not a bad stat at all.

But the bad stat for Bottas is his conversion rate. Of those four poles, he has gone on to win only one race, in Azerbaijan, and even that was a struggle, initially holding on well from Hamilton in the opening corners, and then surviving a lot of late pressure from the Brit as well.

In front or not, Hamilton finds a way

This article is from the BBC Sport website / bbc.co.uk – Jolyon Palmer column: Lewis Hamilton makes winning in F1 look easy