• IN WORDS: Lewis & Valtteri's Germany Debrief

Our drivers reflect on a topsy-turvy race around the Hockenheimring...

'You've always got to believe'

Winning the race from P14 on the grid was a big ask. But through all the German GP drama, Lewis managed to do just that.

"It's obviously very, very difficult from that position and highly unlikely - but you've always got to believe," he explained afterwards.

"We did the parade lap, I could see how much support I had out there and I just wanted to stay collected, stay calm.

"The team did such a great job, the car was fantastic today. Honestly, I'm so grateful. So grateful for the hard work the team has done. Hopefully this solidifies their belief in me.

"Ultimately, on a day like this there is a chance to show what you can do. I feel like I drove the best that I can remember driving. I didn't make any mistakes.

"Obviously, I've done a lot of races and there have been other great races. Silverstone 2008 was pretty great but I went off. It was 99.8%. This one, I didn't make any mistakes at all. It was a dream.

"I would never have thought you could do something like that - but I just kept pushing, I kept believing and it happened."

'The decisive moment'

The deployment of the Safety Car proved to be pivotal in deciding the race result. It didn't go Valtteri's way and, after a brief duel at the restart, the team opted to instruct both drivers to hold position.

"I understand why," Valtteri said, on the decision. "It must've been exciting to watch after the Safety Car with similar cars and not a massive difference in tyre age.

"After the first lap of the restart Lewis was in front of me maybe by one second. I was behind and it would have been very difficult for me to try and go for it again. It would've been risky to try a move, so I completely get it.

"We were free to fight on the first lap of the restart and he managed to stay ahead and that was it. It was a nice, clean battle, but once it calmed down they made the decision.

"I lost the win already with the Safety Car, the timing wasn't ideal with the tyre age I had. That was the decisive moment of the race."

'The most confusing second and a half'

Lewis was called to the stewards after the race, following his trip across the grass at the pit lane entry after aborting his pit stop. He was handed a reprimand for the incident but kept his hard-fought race win.

"It's been the most emotional day, up and down," he admitted. "No one ever wants to go and see the stewards. They have the hardest job because every scenario is always different.

"It was just the most confusing second and a half. I honestly thought that I would stay out. I was happy with my tyres and then they said come in and I saw Valtteri coming in and I asked 'are you sure about it?'

"By the time I got there the answer was: 'No, stay out'. I was literally go left, go right and I just slowed down, tumbled over some grass and made sure that I came back on the track as safe that I could."

'The rain was unpredictable'

Rain was anticipated ahead of the race start. And while it eventually arrived in the final 25 laps, it was only falling on specific sections of track and not at a consistent rate, making the call to stay on slicks or go for intermediates even tougher.

"It was a very difficult race with tricky conditions," Valtteri said. "It was risky, the team was confident the rain would stop.

"It was only for a short moment, so we definitely made the right decision and I'm glad they made it. The rain was very unpredictable at times.

"There was rain only on certain parts of the track. It was difficult to stay on track in some moments and also for the team to make a decision, it was hard."