July 31, 2016 – Lewis Hamilton extended his championship lead to 19 points heading into the summer break with a dominant victory in Germany, as team mate Nico Rosberg was beaten into fourth place by the Red Bulls of Daniel Ricciardo and Max Verstappen.
As polesitter Nico Rosberg was slow away, Hamilton went straight into the lead as the German also fell behind the Red Bulls of Max Verstappen and Daniel Ricciardo, the Dutchman going round the outside of his team mate in Turn 1 to claim second.
Under pressure, Rosberg clung to fourth place, just fending off the Ferraris of Sebastian Vettel and Kimi Raikkonen.
It was soon clear that this was Hamilton’s race to lose, but his pit stops went perfectly and he never lost the lead.
Behind him, Rosberg fought hard to recover and on lap 30 the German completed a muscular pass on Verstappen at the hairpin. However, the Dutchman was quick to complain about being forced off the track, and after a stewards investigation Rosberg was handed a five-second penalty.
The German served the penalty at his final stop on the 44th lap and dropped back to fourth, but thereafter he didn’t have the pace to overhaul the Red Bulls.
Rain drops at the end looked like they might make things tricky for everyone, but in the end Hamilton managed Ricciardo’s valiant challenge perfectly despite heavy lapped traffic, putting in quick laps when necessary. In the end he was 6.9s ahead as he took the flag for his 49th Grand Prix victory – and his sixth win in the last seven races.
Verstappen, who, on a slightly different three-stop strategy to Ricciardo had earlier let his team mate past, closed on the Australian for a while before eventually settling for third and another podium, as Rosberg trailed home fourth. The Ferraris were a lonely fifth and sixth, having never really been in the game – and they now trail Red Bull in the standings.
|2||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull/Renault||6.996s|
|3||Max Verstappen||Red Bull/Renault||13.413s|
|7||Nico Hulkenberg||Force India/Mercedes||1m10.049s|
|8||Jenson Button||McLaren/Honda||1 Lap|
|9||Valtteri Bottas||Williams/Mercedes||1 Lap|
|10||Sergio Perez||Force India/Mercedes||1 Lap|
|11||Esteban Gutierrez||Haas/Ferrari||1 Lap|
|12||Fernando Alonso||McLaren/Honda||1 Lap|
|13||Romain Grosjean||Haas/Ferrari||1 Lap|
|14||Carlos Sainz||Toro Rosso/Ferrari||1 Lap|
|15||Daniil Kvyat||Toro Rosso/Ferrari||1 Lap|
|16||Kevin Magnussen||Renault||1 Lap|
|17||Pascal Wehrlein||Manor/Mercedes||2 Laps|
|18||Marcus Ericsson||Sauber/Ferrari||2 Laps|
|19||Jolyon Palmer||Renault||2 Laps|
|20||Rio Haryanto||Manor/Mercedes||2 Laps|
|–||Felipe Nasr||Sauber/Ferrari||Power Unit|