Cunning strategy secures Mark Webber Silverstone win

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Monday 9th July, 2012 - 12:04am

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Mark Webber

Mark Webber

Red Bull pulled a trump card to supply Mark Webber with a cunning strategy to win the British Grand Prix at Silverstone.

Webber unleashed one of his finest drives to seize the victory over Fernando Alonso, denying the Ferrari driver a third win in 2012 while Sebastien Vettel finished third.

It was the second time Webber has won the British GP and his second win this season after his Monaco triumph.

Webber was ordered to start on the soft tyres while Alonso, who occupied pole position next to the Australian on the grid started on the harder Pirellis.

The call by Red Bull to use and loose the soft tyres as soon as possible was the perfect poker hand as Webber pitted on lap 15.

Ferrari shadowed the move a lap later with Alonso receiving a second set of new hard tyres but that ultimately forced him to last his final stint on soft tyres which left him a sitting duck.

Alonso held sway mid-race, forging out a cosy lead but his time in the sun would ultimately come to an end when he pitted on lap 38.

As the laps ticked over Webber was taking large chunks out of Alonso’s lead, principally doing the damage through the fast Becketts and Maggots sweepers with his front grip proving far superior to the Ferrari.

Vettel used the same tyre sequence as Webber, starting on the softs, however the team was forced to change his pit strategy in the early laps.

The German double world champion was caught in a traffic jam caused by Michael Schumacher who was holding down third position and was summoned to his first stop on lap 11.

Lotus driver Romain Grosjean had an early visit to his pit on lap three to replace his damaged front wing after being involved in the intense jockeying for positions in the opening laps.

Grosjean then staged a massive rearguard action to claw his way back and finish sixth, one position behind his team-mate Kimi Raikkonen.

Alonso’s embattled team-mate Felipe Massa finished fourth in an inspired drive that started with his persistence to finally overtake Schumacher for third after a dozen laps.

There was no joy for Lewis Hamilton who started on the hard compound rubber and had a brief run on soft tyres for seven laps around mid-race but he struggled for pace during his final stint on hards and finished eighth.

Alonso hangs onto his lead in the Championship and moves to 129 with Webber closing on 116 while Vettel is third on 100.

Sergio Perez’s raced ended when he was involved in an incident with the controversial Pastor Maldonado after turning a little more than a dozen laps when the Williams driver made another awkward, rookie error.

It was the second time in the space of a few races Maldonado has been involved in a crash with Perez after their coming together in Monaco.

Perez berated the Venezuelan, who has received several penalties for driving misdemeanours, when interviewed in the pits by calling the Williams wildman “a stupid and dangerous driver”.

Scot Paul Di Resta became the first casualty, retiring after a handful of laps following damage to the floor of his Force India after cutting a rear tyre on the opening tour.

Pos No Driver Team Laps Time/Retired Grid Pts
1 2 Mark Webber Red Bull Racing-Renault 52 Winner 2 25
2 5 Fernando Alonso Ferrari 52 +3.0 secs 1 18
3 1 Sebastian Vettel Red Bull Racing-Renault 52 +4.8 secs 4 15
4 6 Felipe Massa Ferrari 52 +9.5 secs 5 12
5 9 Kimi Räikkönen Lotus-Renault 52 +10.3 secs 6 10
6 10 Romain Grosjean Lotus-Renault 52 +17.1 secs 9 8
7 7 Michael Schumacher Mercedes 52 +29.1 secs 3 6
8 4 Lewis Hamilton McLaren-Mercedes 52 +36.4 secs 8 4
9 19 Bruno Senna Williams-Renault 52 +43.3 secs 13 2
10 3 Jenson Button McLaren-Mercedes 52 +44.4 secs 16 1
11 14 Kamui Kobayashi Sauber-Ferrari 52 +45.3 secs 17  
12 12 Nico Hulkenberg Force India-Mercedes 52 +47.8 secs 14  
13 16 Daniel Ricciardo STR-Ferrari 52 +51.2 secs 12  
14 17 Jean-Eric Vergne STR-Ferrari 52 +53.3 secs 23  
15 8 Nico Rosberg Mercedes 52 +57.3 secs 11  
16 18 Pastor Maldonado Williams-Renault 51 +1 Lap 7  
17 20 Heikki Kovalainen Caterham-Renault 51 +1 Lap 19  
18 24 Timo Glock Marussia-Cosworth 51 +1 Lap 20  
19 25 Charles Pic Marussia-Cosworth 51 +1 Lap 24  
20 22 Pedro de la Rosa HRT-Cosworth 50 +2 Laps 21  
21 23 Narain Karthikeyan HRT-Cosworth 50 +2 Laps 22  
Ret 15 Sergio Perez Sauber-Ferrari 11 +41 Laps 15  
Ret 11 Paul di Resta Force India-Mercedes 2 +50 Laps 10  
DNS 21 Vitaly Petrov Caterham-Renault 0 Engine 18  

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