|Red Bull Formula One driver Mark Webber of Australia celebrates winning the British F1 Grand Prix on July 11, 2010. (REUTERS/Steve Crisp)
SILVERSTONE, England - Mark Webber overtook his Red Bull Racing teammate Sebastian Vettel for the lead on the opening lap and then put on a dominating performance from there to win Sunday's British Grand Prix.
Webber started alongside Vettel on the front row, but Vettel got pushed wide as Webber made the pass coming out of the first corner. The young German ran off course twice and suffered a punctured right-rear tire when he drove over the rumble strips. He had to pit unexpectedly, which placed him at the tail end of the 24-car field.
One day after Red Bull officials pulled the newly developed front wing off of Webber's car and gave it to Vettel prior to qualifying for the British GP, Webber got redemption after crossing the finish line 1.36 seconds ahead of current points leader and home crowd favorite Lewis Hamilton from McLaren.
"Not bad for a number two driver," Webber said to team principal Christian Horner over the radio after the Australian claimed his third win of the season and the fifth of his F1 career.
Webber felt Red Bull showed favoritism to Vettel, particularly after Vettel easily won his fifth pole this season.
"I made a good start, and I was very keen on making my corner; it worked out well for me, so that was good," Webber said.
Two weeks ago at Valencia, Spain, Vettel started on pole and led all 57 laps to win the European Grand Prix, while Webber was involved in a horrifying wreck early in the race when he slammed into the back of Heikki Kovalainen. Webber's car went airborne and landed upside down before he crashed hard into the tire barrier. He walked away from the incident uninjured, but finished 24th.
"I just did the best job I could today, and it worked out okay," he said. "I enjoyed this grand prix to be quite honest."
Vettel, who won last year's British GP, rallied from a one-lap deficit to finish seventh and keep his championship hopes very much alive.
Hamilton had struggled with his car in practices earlier this weekend, but finished in the runner-up for the second straight grand prix. Hamilton's performance received plenty of cheers from his home crowd of more than 105,000 at the newly re-figured Silverstone Circuit.
"I don't think it was a miracle result; I think it was a result of all the hard and affectionate work the team has put in," Hamilton said. "The car was nice to drive, but it wasn't as fast as [Webber] ahead of us, but we did the best with the package we had."
Nico Rosberg from Mercedes GP finished third for his first podium since April in the Chinese Grand Prix.
"The result goes down to a great effort from the team to turn things around after Valencia, where we had a disastrous weekend," Rosberg said. "We made great progress on the car, which allowed me to be on the podium today."
Hamilton's teammate and British compatriot Jenson Button took the fourth spot, and Rubens Barrichello from Williams completed the top-five.
With 10 grand prix now completed, Hamilton has accumulated 145 points, compared to 133 for Button and 128 for Webber. Vettel dropped to fourth in the championship standings (-24).
BMW Sauber's Kamui Kobayashi finished sixth. Adrian Sutil from Force India was eighth, followed by Mercedes' Michael Schumacher, the seven-time F1 champion, and Nico Hulkenberg from Williams.
Ferrari drivers Fernando Alonso and Felipe Massa finished outside the top-10, with Alonso taking the 14th spot and Massa ending up one position behind in 15th.
Massa also suffered a cut tire and had to pit on the opening lap after making contact with Alonso. Midway through the race, stewards penalized Alonso with a pit road drive-through after he cut a corner during his pass on Robert Kubica for position.