The 2021 Hungarian Grand Prix started with mayhem and ended with an incredible shock victor and some brilliant stories up and down the grid.

Along with several fairytale moments for those who capitalised on an action-packed, gripping wet-to-dry race, others will be nursing some bruises over the forthcoming three-week break.

Here are our winners and losers from F1’s final race before the summer break…

Winners

Esteban Ocon and Alpine


A surprise but welcome winner in Hungary as Esteban Ocon produced the drive of his life to claim a hard-fought maiden grand prix victory.

The Frenchman guided his Alpine around the Turn 1 chaos and found himself in the lead early on having capitalised on Mercedes getting its tyre strategy wrong at the post-red flag restart.

From there, Ocon impressively held his nerve to keep 53-time grand prix winner Sebastian Vettel at bay for the remainder of the race despite facing relentless pressure from the Aston Martin driver.

Ocon sealed a sensational win to mark the Enstone-based team’s first victory since Fernando Alonso’s triumph at the 2008 Japanese Grand Prix.

Sebastian Vettel

A vintage performance from Vettel who rolled back the years with a fantastic drive to second on the road.

The four-time world champion hounded Ocon throughout but ultimately a slow pit stop ruined his best chance to get ahead of the Alpine around a circuit where following and overtaking is extremely difficult.

Vettel was later disqualified from the race for failing to provide the adequate fuel sample in post-race scrutinising, though Aston Martin intends to appeal the decision.

A DSQ does not take away from Vettel’s excellent performance and regardless of the final outcome, Sunday was an example of the German at his best - both on and off the track.

Fernando Alonso

In Hungary, Alonso emphatically proved anyone doubting his credentials as a team player wrong.

The two-time world champion played a key role in helping Ocon secure his shock maiden F1 win for Alpine by halting Hamilton’s recovery effort.

Former title rivals Alonso and Hamilton engaged in a box office scrap over fourth place, with the Spaniard successfully managing to stall Hamilton’s progress for 10 laps before he finally found a way past.

Alonso’s exceptional defence protected Ocon’s lead as the fast-charging Hamilton ran out of laps to challenge for the win, finishing a couple of seconds adrift.

He’s definitely still got it at 40.

Williams

The Hungarian GP was exactly the sort of race Williams had been waiting for. Following a number of near-misses over the past 12 months, the Grove squad finally ended its points-scoring drought - and it did so in style.

Nicholas Latifi turned in his best drive in F1 to date to claim his first points in eighth place, heading home teammate George Russell, who finally got off the mark for Williams.

In a season where points are hard to come, Hungary marked a massive result for Williams, lifting it above both of its main rivals Haas and Alfa Romeo and into eighth place in the world championship.

Lewis Hamilton

While Hamilton will be frustrated to see his wait for a 100th career victory go on, a podium was still a very good result considering the Briton went from first to last after Mercedes’ tyre strategy blunder.

Hamilton was staggeringly fast after Mercedes switched the seven-time world champion onto a two-stopper, and he surely would have sealed an unthinkable victory had Alonso not got in his way.

With Red Bull enduring another miserable day, Hamilton now heads into the summer break with some crucial momentum on his side in the title race, holding a six-point lead over main rival Max Verstappen.

Losers

Max Verstappen and Red Bull

An out-of-control Valtteri Bottas managed to cause damage to both Red Bulls after he sent Lando Norris’ McLaren slewing into the side of Verstappen just seconds before the Finn eliminated Sergio Perez in the first corner carnage.

Following Silverstone, Red Bull really needed to respond to ensure Hamilton’s new-found momentum was short-lived, but it came away with just a point to show for its efforts as Verstappen could only salvage 10th in his heavily-damaged car.

With Hamilton recovering to the podium, Red Bull has now fallen behind Mercedes in both world championships. It has also been left with engine concerns on both cars following a pair of events that have proved costly in more ways than one.

Valtteri Bottas

In the space of a few short seconds, Bottas removed himself from the Christmas card lists of several drivers as he had a hand in causing retirements for both Perez and Norris.

While his race-ending error somewhat ironically worked out rather well for Mercedes by removing two of Hamilton’s biggest threats from the picture, it was not the result he was aiming for as he looks to put forward his case to remain with the team for another year.

A rather embarrassing blunder leaves Bottas fourth in the championship. What’s more, he has earned himself a five-place grid drop for the next round in Belgium when F1 resumes at the end of the month.

Lance Stroll
While his teammate starred, Lance Stroll’s Hungarian GP lasted a mere few seconds as he helped contribute to the Turn 1 carnage.

Stroll arrived far too quickly into the corner, lost control under braking and careered into Leclerc, whose Ferrari was then sent Daniel Ricciardo spinning.

Along with Bottas, the Canadian was punished for his mistake and has picked up a grid penalty for the next race.

McLaren and Daniel Ricciardo

McLaren were one of the biggest losers from the first-corner chaos as Norris and Ricciardo became caught up in the melee.

Norris was forced to retire under the red flag with significant damage to his car, ending the Briton’s remarkable 15-race points-scoring streak.

Ricciardo was able to continue but struggled with damage and failed to recover into the points, compounding a miserable weekend for the Australian.

McLaren’s non-score was capitalised on by Ferrari, with Carlos Sainz driving a brilliant race to bring home some big points that could prove crucial come the end of the year in the battle over P3.

Alfa Romeo

Unlike Williams, Alfa Romeo couldn’t take advantage of a crazy race as both drivers struggled and picked up needless penalties.

The red flag prevented Giovinazzi from discovering whether his bold gamble to switch onto slicks at the original start would have paid off, before his race was ruined by a stop/go penalty for speeding in the pitlane.

Alfa then clumsily released Raikkonen into the path of Mazepin’s oncoming Haas in the pitlane as the pair collided, with the Finn picking up a time penalty.