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Raikkonen wins Hungarian GP

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July 31, 2005 20:10 IST

Kimi Raikkonen won the Hungarian Grand Prix for McLaren on Sunday to revive his Formula One title hopes and claw 10 points back from Renault's championship leader Fernando Alonso.

After the agony of retiring while leading last weekend's German Grand Prix, won by Alonso who failed to score this time, the Finn celebrated his fourth victory of the year in the heat of the Hungaroring.

Seven times world champion Michael Schumacher in his Ferrari finished 35.5 seconds behind, a huge margin, after starting on pole position and leading for much of the first half.

India's Narain Karthikeyan finished 12th, right behind the Championship leader Fernando Alonso.

Alonso was 11th on an afternoon of hard labour and no reward, his lead cut to a still comfortable 26 with six races remaining.

McLaren trimmed Renault's lead in the constructors' championship to 12 points but their hopes of a one-two finish died when Colombian Juan Pablo Montoya retired while leading after 41 of the 70 laps.

Alonso's race was wrecked when he broke his car's front wing in a coming together with Ralf Schumacher's Toyota at the first corner.

The 24-year-old pitted at the end of the opening lap and rejoined in 17th place at a circuit where overtaking is notoriously difficult.

The only consolation for Renault was McLaren's continued reliability woes, with Montoya crawling back to the pits to retire.

While Schumacher failed to hold off Raikkonen's challenge, losing out in the pitstops, he could take heart from an encouragingly competitive day for the champions.


The most satisfying moment by far for the German, whose championship hopes have all but vanished, came when he lapped Alonso before the half-way point.

Two years ago it was Alonso, then only just 22, who lapped Schumacher in Hungary on his way to becoming the sport's youngest race winner.

Ralf Schumacher took his first podium of the season, and first for Toyota, in third place ahead of Italian team mate Jarno Trulli in fourth.

Briton Jenson Button, his BAR stripped of tobacco advertising before European legislation comes into force on Monday, was fifth with Germany's Nick Heidfeld sixth for Williams.

Australian Mark Webber collected two more points for the BMW-powered team while Japan's Takuma Sato finally joined the pointscorers in eighth place for BAR.

Neither of the Red Bull drivers lasted a lap.

Austrian Christian Klien barrel-rolled spectacularly at the first corner and Briton David Coulthard crashed out after Alonso's Renault shed its front wing in his path.

Brazilian Rubens Barrichello, in the second Ferrari, also had a tough race after running into the back of Trulli's Toyota at the start and having to make an unscheduled pitstop for a replacement wing. He finished 10th.

Alan Baldwin
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