Formula One

 
          === Ricciardo wins Hungarian GP, Hamilton finishes third ===
 
 Budapest, Hungary (SportsNetwork.com) - Daniel Ricciardo from Red Bull battled
 changing  weather conditions,  benefited from a pair of safety-car periods and
 capitalized on superb pit strategy to win Sunday's Hungarian Grand Prix.
 
 Ricciardo  overtook Ferrari's  Fernando Alonso  for the  lead with  three laps
 remaining  and  then beat  Alonso to  the finish  line by  5.2 seconds for his
 second career win in Formula One. The 25-year-old Australian scored his maiden
 victory in the June 8 Canadian Grand Prix.
 
 "Winning  this  today, it  honestly feels  as good as  the first [in Canada],"
 Ricciardo  said. "This  one sank in a  lot quicker. Crossing the line today, I
 knew  what  was going on a  bit more. And  I could enjoy it immediately rather
 than  it being delayed.  It was awesome. To have to pass guys again to win the
 race,  as I did in Canada, makes it a lot more satisfying, knowing that we did
 have a bit of a fight on our hands."
 
 After  starting from  the  22nd position  and from  pit  lane, Lewis  Hamilton
 charged  through the field in this 70-lap grand prix to finish third, one spot
 ahead  of his  Mercedes teammate,  Nico Rosberg,  the current  F1 championship
 leader.
 
 Hamilton  started from the  pit lane for the first time in his F1 career after
 he  suffered an engine fire in the early going of Saturday's qualifying at the
 Hungaroring.  His team had to make a chassis, engine and gearbox change, which
 forced  Hamilton to start the race from the pits. On the opening lap, Hamilton
 experienced  a brake issue, causing him to slide off of the slippery track and
 into  the barrier. He did not sustain any significant damage to his car during
 the incident.
 
 "It  is a  great result today," Hamilton  said. "I was just pushing as hard as
 possible  to get as  high as I could. It was obviously damage limitation after
 what  happened yesterday. I  can't express the pain I feel when we have issues
 such  as  in the last couple  of races. It's  hard to swallow and difficult to
 come  back  the next day  and get the right  balance between not attacking too
 much but pushing to the limit."
 
 A  heavy shower  moved over this 2.722-mile (4.381-kilometer), 14-turn circuit
 shortly  before the  start  of  this race.  The  wet  surface caused  numerous
 crashes, forcing the deployment of the safety car two times.
 
 It was deployed for the first time on lap 8 when Marcus Ericsson from Caterham
 lost  control exiting  turn 3  and slammed  hard into  the barrier.  The final
 safety-car  period occurred on lap 23 when Force India's Sergio Perez ran wide
 coming  out of  a corner and made  heavy impact with the wall. The two periods
 set  up  various tire  strategies for  teams when  they pitted. The strategies
 worked towards Ricciardo and Hamilton's favor.
 
 The  weather improved  and the track surface  had dried for the second half of
 the race.
 
 Hamilton trimmed Rosberg's lead from 14 points to 11.
 
 "The  two  safety-car periods helped quite  a lot, but naturally I looked fast
 and  had the pace  this weekend, so there was an opportunity for more points,"
 Hamilton  said. "I  would like  to  say a  big congratulations  to Daniel  and
 Fernando.  It was close  at the end, and it was getting very hard to keep Nico
 behind,  as  he was  catching at  close to  three seconds  a lap. Coming back,
 through,  shows how  great this car and  team is, and this result is much more
 satisfying  than an easy win. Going into the break, I'm still in the fight for
 the championship, which is very satisfying."
 
 Rosberg  started  on the pole  and ran  in front until  the first round of pit
 stops  during  the  safety-car  period. The  separation  between  race  winner
 Ricciardo and fourth-place Rosberg was only 6.3 seconds.
 
 "That  was a disappointing afternoon," Rosberg said. "A few things didn't work
 out  for me  and it was a  very up and down  race. In the beginning it was all
 under  control. Unfortunately  the safety car cost me the lead, because I just
 missed  the pit entry  and then I couldn't pit. I also had some braking issues
 after  the  safety car  went in and  a difficult period  of time with handling
 this, which cost me some positions."
 
 Alonso's second-place run marked his best finish of the season. He also earned
 his and Ferrari's second podium this year.
 
 "I  think it has  been a tough weekend, a tough season in general, so to get a
 podium  is always a nice surprise, let's say," Alonso said. "We took a gamble.
 We risked today just trying to get the victory."
 
 Felipe  Massa from  Williams finished  fifth, while  Ferrari's Kimi  Raikkonen
 placed sixth.
 
 Ricciardo's  teammate,  Sebastian Vettel,  the  four-time  F1 world  champion,
 finished seventh after rebounding from a spin at the halfway point. Vettel ran
 wide  just  past the  entrance to pit  lane and did  a 360-degree slide before
 making slight contact with the wall.
 
 "It  wasn't  a great  race," Vettel said.  "I spun, which  was my mistake, and
 before  that, I was unlucky with the safety car in the first stint. The timing
 meant   the   first  four  cars   lost  positions  to  those  running  behind.
 Unfortunately,  we were then in the wrong mode for the restart, and I lost two
 positions. It's good for Daniel that he won today, I'm happy for him."
 
 Valtteri  Bottas  (Williams), Jean-Eric  Verge (Toro  Rosso) and Jenson Button
 (McLaren) completed the top-10.
 
 With  11 races  completed, Rosberg, Hamilton and Riccardo are the only drivers
 who have won a grand prix this season. F1 takes a three-week "summer vacation"
 before  it resumes its schedule on Aug. 24 with the Belgian Grand Prix at Spa-
 Francorchamps.
 
 07/27 14:48:32 ET

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