On this day in 2008, Lewis Hamilton won his home race for the first time at rainy Silverstone after the first pole position of his team mate Heikki Kovalainen.
Hamilton had his F1 debut in 2007 with a brilliant McLaren MP4-22 and immediately qualified on the pole position for his home race, but finished just three seconds behind Raikkonen and teammate Fernando Alonso.
One year later, things didn’t start well because he was only third in fastest car on the grid, behind teammate Heikki Kovalainen, who won his first and only pole position and Mark Webber in Red Bull.
But Lewis was brilliant in the rain and claimed his first victory on the British soil with a huge advantage ahead of Nick Heidfeld in BMW.
“It was the toughest , but also one of the best races I’ve ever driven. It was extremely slippery, very similar to the conditions in the Japanese GP .”
“When I entered the last lap, I saw the audience standing and I was praying, ‘Just finish, just finish.'”
“It was a very emotional moment to win the domestic race and I want to dedicate it to my family.”
The race will also be remembered by the strategic mistake of Ferrari, because Raikkonen was left on the track on worn tyres. Until the first pitstops, he was the only one to keep up with Hamilton, but during the first pitstops Ferrari hoped weather will improve and didn’t change his tyres.
After several laps it was raining again and Kimi sank into the middle of the field until the mechanics were ready to react to the new situation.
Hamilton won with a huge advantage in front of Heidfeld in BMW and third was Barrichello in otherwise desperately uncompetitive Honda thanks to the brilliant strategic move by Ross Brawn, who switched him on extreme wet tyres in the right moment.