Alonso hails best GP win yet
DOMINANT FROM POLE: Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso clinched pole position and held on to his lead throughout the 2012 German F1 GP but, with 10 races to go, could still be toppled from his top perch.
Author: GORDON HOWARD
Fernando Alonso extended his lead in the 2012 Formula 1 Drivers' World championship with a flawless drive to victory for Ferrari in the German GP.
Driving with perfect judgment, Alonso started from pole and dominated the 67-lap race in consummate style as he finished 3.7sec ahead of local hero and defending champion Red Bull's Sebastian Vettel
It was Alonso's third win in 2012 after triumphs in Malaysia and Valencia and it marks his 22nd consecutive scoring race for Ferrari.
DOMINATING FROM POLE
He is now 34 points clear of Mark Webber in the title race with 154 points to the Australian's 120.
Alonso said: "We'll enjoy the win. Starting on pole was the key factor because it was difficult to overtake and we were not the fastest but we kept the position."
Drawing a parallel to Europe's troubled economic situation, Alonso added: "I don't really know politics, but it is true that the situation is not great in Spain, though a Spanish driver in an Italian car designed by a Greek man is good to win here."
McLaren's Jenson Button, who had proved the potential of his revamped car for most of the race, finished third after being passed by Vettel, who ran wide and off the track, on the penultimate lap.
Race stewards announced they were investigating Vettel's overtake, a statement that left the result unconfirmed pending the result of their decision and any chosen sanction.
Button said: "I had a great race out there and it is nice to be fighting at the front again. I don't wish to comment at the moment about the manoeuvre at Turn 6."
Vettel added: "I wasn't sure if he was on the inside or not. The last thing you want to do is make contact. When we were side-by-side I tried to give him enough room but it's difficult to see.
"I went wide. We were all struggling with tyres, Jenson in particular, which is why I was able to pass him."
McLaren team chief Martin Whitmarsh said: "Look where Jenson was at the end of the first stint, Vettel and Alonso were some way down the road and we had to hunt them down.
"Anyone who doubted Jenson's hunger can now put that to the back of their mind. There is a bit of debate about what happened on the last lap and the stewards will take a view on that."
TOUGH DAY FOR HAMILTON
Lotus' Kimi Raikkonen finished ahead of Sauber's Kamui Kobayashi and team mate Sergio Perez, who was sixth.
Seven-times champion and German hero Michael Schumacher was seventh for Mercedes ahead of Red Bull's Mark Webber and Force India's Nico Hulkenberg in ninth.
Mercedes' Nico Rosberg was 10th.
Button's McLaren team mate Lewis Hamilton, who had hoped to mark his 100th Formula 1 race with a race to remember, ended up with one to forget as he suffered a puncture after two laps and eventually had to retire.
A crash on the opening corner involving Felipe Massa's Ferrari, Lotus' Romain Grosjean and Williams' Bruno Senna marred the start of the race but, surprisingly, there was no red flag to cover the incident. As lot of debris was left on the circuit and led to Hamilton's puncture.
Hamilton commented: "I have no idea [how the car got damaged]. I saw the debris come up and it damaged it. The car felt terrible after that, the rear floor is damaged. The only positive I can take from this weekend is Jenson's result."
Results from the German Grand Prix: