Max Verstappen took his first win of the season in the 2020 Formula 1 70th Anniversary Grand Prix at Silverstone. The Red Bull driver took the ninth win of his career and the first at the UK circuit as he beat the Mercedes drivers to the top spot. Coming in a distant second was reigning champion Lewis Hamilton after a late charge over teammate Valtteri Bottas in the race to take P2. The British driver managed to secure his career's 155th podium though, equaling Michael Schumacher's record in F1.
Verstappen started the race from P4 behind the Mercedes but it was the tyre strategy that won him the race with a lead of 11.326s. The Belgian-Dutch driver opted for hard tyres and the only driver to do so in the top 10 order that prompted a longer stint before entering the pits. Meanwhile, both Verstappen and Bottas struggled with the mediums.
Bottas started the race from the pole position and retained the lead with Hamilton in P2 and Nico Hulkenberg in the Racing Point at P3. Verstappen was quick to pass Hulkenberg to take third, while Hamilton chased Bottas to take the lead in the race but the Finnish racing driver was unrelenting, almost mimicking the events from last year's British GP.
The Mercedes drivers passed Verstappen in the early laps but the hard tyres allowed the Red Bull racer to catch up on both drivers with a gap of just 0.5s between Hamilton and Verstappen. Bottas was the first of the top three drivers to pit in order to switch from his mediums to hard tyres on Lap 13. Hamilton entered the pits on the next lap while Verstappen continued on the hards to take the lead once again. Despite the new tyres, both Mercedes drivers suffered blisters once again and couldn't lap better than 1m32s, while Verstappen still running on the same set of tyres was lapping the circuit on 1m31s.
The Red Bull racer though entered the pits on Lap 26 switching to mediums and missed retaking the lead by milliseconds, joining behind Bottas. The Mercedes driver defended the lead for the next few turns before Verstappen made a move on Luffield to pass the driver. Red Bull called Verstappen on Lap 32 with Mercedes doing the same with Bottas for a second tyre change. Both drivers swapped mediums for hard tyres, while Hamilton was called in nine laps later. The driver rejoined at P4 behind Ferrari's Charles Leclerc, who put an impressive performance to climb the order starting from P8.
Hamilton spent some time behind the Ferrari before finally attacking Leclerc to take P3 on Lap 45 and was now looking at P2 while Verstappen was comfortably settled in the lead. The Briton found the opportunity on Lap 49 with the help of DRS on the Wellington straight and held on to the position as Verstappen crossed the chequered flag first.
Finishing outside top three drivers was Leclerc after a one-stop strategy, while Alex Albon in the second Red Bull made incredible passes to take P5, starting from P9 on the grid. Racing Point's Lance Stroll dropped to P6 after a late pass from Albon, while Hulkenberg finished at P7 after opting for softs that required a three pitstop strategy. Renault's Esteban Ocon took P8 in a one-stop strategy, while McLaren's Lando Norris and AlphaTauri's Daniil Kvyat rounded up the top ten.
Pierre Gasly in the second AlphaTauri finished at P11 after struggling on hards in the second half of the race, dropping from P7. Sebastian Vettel of Ferrari finished at P12 after spinning on the opening lap, ahead of McLaren's Carlos Sainz Jr. Daniel Ricciardo took P14 for Renault after starting fifth on the grid. Kimi Raikkonen of Alfa Romeo finished in 15th place after starting in the last row, ahead of Haas driver Romain Grosjean followed by Antonio Giovinazzi in the second Alfa car. The Williams drivers George Russell and Nicholas Latifi were the final finishers in the race. Kevin Magnussen in the second Haas was the only non-finisher after a late spin in the 70th Anniversary GP.