The grandstands were empty at Silverstone as F1 raced on through the Covid pandemic. We can only imagine the noise that would have erupted from spectators as the 2020 British Grand Prix reached its finale.
Hamilton had looked to be on course for a straightforward win, after leading from the start. But with six laps to go, team-mate Valtteri Bottas, who up to that point had kept pace with Hamilton, started dropping back into the clutches of Max Verstappen. Two laps later it became clear why the Finn was struggling so much when his tyre went flat and began disintegrating.
On a circuit known to be tough on tyres, a nervous Red Bull team pitted Verstappen but Mercedes left Hamilton out in front, only needing to nurse his car home.
Five corners into the final lap that looked to be the wrong decision as Hamilton’s left front tyre suddenly failed, flailing around the hub as the race leader tried desperately to maintain control — and momentum.
The sparking Mercedes slithered through the final two miles on three wheels as a charging Verstappen on soft tyres hunted him down.
The 30-second lead was being hacked corner by corner, and Verstappen was bearing down as the Mercedes snaked through the final corner. At the flag, just six seconds separated the pair.
2020 British Grand Prix report