British GP: Why Was Hamilton Awarded ‘Pirelli Speed King Award’ & Why Are Fans Mocking It?

Published 07/16/2021, 3:01 PM EDT
Formula One F1 – British Grand Prix – Silverstone Circuit, Silverstone, Britain – July 16, 2021 Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton celebrates after finishing first in the sprint race qualifying Pool via REUTERS/Lars Baron


Lewis Hamilton blitzed his way to becoming the fastest driver on the grid during Qualifying at the British GP. What’s impressive is that the Briton ousted the ever-persistent threat from Max Verstappen to secure P1 by an extremely fine margin.

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

However, despite securing first place in the qualifying session, the 7-time world champion did not receive the classic ‘tire’ trophy, normally depicting the award for pole position.

Instead, F1 unveiled a newer version of an award called the Pirelli Speed King award, which went into the hands of Hamilton for the first time ever.

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

What’s more, Hamilton also got himself onto the history books with this qualifying session. Of course, it is quite a unique record that Hamilton managed to break, and the fans can’t help but make a mockery of it.

The 7-time world champion now has more Pirelli Speed King awards than Ayrton Senna, Michael Schumacher, and Juan Manuel Fangio, combined.

Why didn’t Lewis Hamilton receive the usual F1 pole position award?

Well, it’s quite simple. None of the drivers were technically fighting for the pole position, as the past qualifying sessions had suggested. Instead, the drivers were just battling hard to secure a commendable position to start from over the sprint race.

Formula One F1 – British Grand Prix – Silverstone Circuit, Silverstone, Britain – July 16, 2021 Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton celebrates after finishing first in the sprint race qualifying REUTERS/Peter Cziborra

And the winner of the sprint race will subsequently be hailed as the pole man. Of course, this sounds quite unusual and confusing.

But, Rules suggest that the session before the main race decides the starting grid, and that doesn’t necessarily have to be the qualifying session. Hence, F1 opted to switch the sprint race with qualifying.

DIVE DEEPER

Why Do Mercedes Dominate F1?

7 months ago

What to expect from Saturday’s sprint race at the British GP?

Considering how the sprint race could play a role in setting the grid for Sunday’s race, there is no denying that the 30-minute session is going to be eventful.

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

Formula One F1 – British Grand Prix – Silverstone Circuit, Silverstone, Britain – July 16, 2021 Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton shakes hands with Valtteri Bottas after finishing first and third respectively in the sprint race qualifying REUTERS/Andrew Couldridge

The drivers will have nothing to worry about, as any kind of management is off the table, including fuel and tires. Hence, the fans will potentially get to see the drivers at their best, pushing their cars to the absolute limit over each and every lap.

Who knows? This could even remind us of the golden eras of F1. But, of course, the biggest question is, who is going to become the first-ever sprint race winner? Only time will tell.

ADVERTISEMENT

Article continues below this ad

Watch Story: What Are Sprint Races & Where Will They Be Held?

SHARE THIS ARTICLE :

Rohit Kumar

938 articles

Rohit Kumar is an F1 author at EssentiallySports. He has been an ardent follower of the racing series since 2007, with his love for the sport coinciding with his love for Kimi Raikkonen. He is also an ardent follower of Sebastian Vettel and Aston Martin Racing.

ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

essentiallysports's Stories