In his latest exclusive feature on, David Tremayne - three time Guild of Motoring Writers Journalist of the Year Award winner and multi-award winning F1 author - takes a look back over the German Grand Prix, where Sebastian Vettel managed to secure his first victory on home soil...

The German GP began with lingering doubts over Pirelli's tyres and fears of a GPDA drivers' boycott if further problems arose, but in the end it was business as usual for Sebastian Vettel and Red Bull.

The only new things were that he finally won his home Grand Prix, and broke the curious jinx that had hitherto prevented him from winning a race in the month of July.

The work that Pirelli did in creating revised 2013 tyres with Kevlar belts instead of steel, was outstanding given the limited time since the previous Sunday. And the manner in which the FIA quickly adopted and mandated the tyre company's new diktat on tyre usage was exactly what the situation needed.

Teams could no longer reverse the direction of the rear tyres to improve longevity, nor run as much as four degrees of rear camber or tyre pressures as low as 14psi; the new figures respectively were 2.5 and 16, though obviously tyre pressures increase as the tyre heats up.

It's fair to say that the Nurburgring doesn't impose anything like the cornering loads that Silverstone does, but there were sighs of relief all along the pit lane when the 22 drivers amassed more than 1200 troublefree laps on Friday.

But the race did raise other issues: cameraman Paul Allen was hit by Mark Webber's errant right rear wheel during the Australian's first pit stop, for which Red Bull was fined 30,000 euros for unsafe release; and then after catching fire and being abandoned, Jules Bianchi's stricken Marussia rolled slowly back down the hill before the NGK chicane and across the track.

Thankfully, Paul is recovering in hospital in Koblenz with collarbone and rib injuries, while the Marussia didn't hit anyone or anything. But as Martin Whitmarsh was quick to point out, there is no room for complacency, in the pit lane where speed limits have made things safer, or out on the track.

Despite Vettel's predictable win it was an interesting race in which he was under pressure for much of it, struggling for part of the time with a momentary malfunction of his DRS which reacted to a reboot.

In 42-44 degrees C track temperatures and 22-24 ambient, the Lotuses came into their own again after all the recent cool races, and first Romain Grosjean and then Kimi Raikkonen (cleverly equipped with soft tyres for his final stint) were serious threats to Vettel and kept him on his toes all the way to the chequered flag. They lost out under the Marussia safety car, and Raikkonen said afterwards that he might have got away without his final stop.

Ferrari opted to qualify on medium tyres, but that advantage in Fernando Alonso's case was negated slightly by the need to change his pre-worn set after only 12 laps. Like Raikkonen, he used his softs in the final stint, but didn't quite have enough to get on the podium this time despite his usual brilliance behind the wheel.

There was good and bad news for Mercedes; Hamilton took a brilliant pole, but a snafu in which the team misjudged the way the track came in during Q2 saw British GP victor Nico Rosberg in the pits during a flurry of improvements from others, and only 11th on the grid. Hamilton was blown away instantly by the Red Bulls, couldn't keep up with them, and struggled with tyre degradation throughout, as Rosberg failed to feature. At one stage Hamilton couldn't pass Nico Hulkenberg's well-driven Sauber until the 37th lap. More than most, Mercedes suffered from the rule mandating the rear tyres being uni-directional as Pirelli intended.

McLaren looked stronger, benefitting from a powertrain modification previously used by Mercedes and, interestingly, Force India. Jenson Button and Sergio Perez were points contenders all through, as the team regained some direction. Force India, by contrast, had its least competitive race of the season as did Toro Rosso after sparkling in qualifying, but Hulkenberg put Sauber into Q3 and took the final point in a huge boost for the Swiss team which, however, had hoped for more.


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