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Race Report

Hungarian Grand Prix
Hungaroring, Budapest

Qualifying - Race - Analysis

2.465 miles

Qualifying : Warm & sunny

1996 Pole: Michael Schumacher (Ferrari) 1m 17.129s

The Starting Grid

Michael Schumacher Ferrari 1m 14.672s
Jacques Villeneuve Williams-Renault 1m 14.859s
Damon Hill TWR Arrows-Yamaha 1m 15.044s
Mika Hakkinen McLaren-Mercedes 1m 15.140s
Eddie Irvine Ferrari 1m 15.424s
Heinz-Harald Frentzen Williams-Renault 1m 15.520s
Gerhard Berger Benetton-Renault 1m 15.699s
David Coulthard McLaren-Mercedes 1m 15.705s
Jean Alesi Benetton-Renault 1m 15.905s
Rubens Barrichello Stewart-Ford 1m 16.138s
Johnny Herbert Sauber-Petronas 1m 16.138s
Jarno Trulli Prost-Mugen 1m 16.297s
Gianni Fisichella Jordan-Peugeot 1m 16.300s
Ralf Schumacher Jordan-Peugeot 1m 16.686s
Gianni Morbidelli Sauber-Petronas 1m 16.766s
Shinji Nakano Prost-Mugen 1m 16.784s
Jan Magnussen Stewart-Ford 1m 16.858s
Jos Verstappen Tyrrell-Ford 1m 17.095s
Pedro Diniz TWR Arrows-Yamaha 1m 17.118s
Ukyo Katayama Minardi-Hart 1m 17.232s
Mika Salo Tyrrell-Ford 1m 17.482s
Tarso Marques Minardi-Hart 1m 18.020s

107 % rule time: 1m 19.899s

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Race : 77 laps
Hot and sunny

1996 Winner: Jacques Villeneuve (Williams) 1h 46m 21.134s

The Result

Jacques Villeneuve Williams-Renault 1h 45m 47.149s
Damon HillTWR Arrows-Yamaha 1h 45m 56.228s
Johnny Herbert Sauber-Petronas 1h 46m 07.594s
Michael Schumacher Ferrari 1h 46m 17.650s
Ralf Schumacher Jordan-Peugeot 1h 46m 17.864s
Shinji Nakano Prost-Mugen 1h 46m 28.661s

Jarno Trulli Prost-Mugen 1h 47m 02.701s
Gerhard Berger Benetton-Renault 1h 47m 03.558s
Eddie Irvine Ferrari 76 laps - spun off
Ukyo Katayama Minardi-Hart 1 lap down
Jean Alesi Benetton-Renault 1 lap down
Tarso Marques Minardi-Hart 2 laps down
Mika Salo Tyrrell-Ford 2 laps down
David Coulthard McLaren-Mercedes 65 laps - electrics
Jos Verstappen Tyrrell-Ford 61 laps -
Pedro DinizTWR Arrows-Yamaha 53 laps -
Gianni Fisichella Jordan-Peugeot 42 laps -
Heinz-Harald Frentzen Williams-Renault 29 laps - refuelling valve failure
Rubens Barrichello Stewart-Ford 29 laps -
Mika Hakkinen McLaren-Mercedes 12 laps -
Gianni Morbidelli Sauber-Petronas 8 laps - engine
Jan Magnussen Stewart-Ford 5 laps -

Fastest Lap

1997 : Heinz-Harald Frentzen (Williams) 1m 18.372s
Lap Record: Nigel Mansell (Williams) 1m 18.308s (1992)

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Analysis :
It takes talent, the right equipment and lots of luck to win a World Championship, and right now Jacques Villeneuve is getting all the breaks. A month after winning at Silverstone thanks to an exploding Mercedes engine, he was in the right place to capitalize on the faultering TWR-Arrows of Damon Hill.

In a stunning performance the reigning World Champion put the Bridgestone shod machine on the second row of the grid and after 10 laps, into the lead of the race. For the next 64 laps, Hill simply drove into the distance, but with just 3 laps to go everything started to fall apart. A hydraulic problem started to make the engine cut out, then with the teams first ever vicory in sight, the gearbox jammed in neutral ...
Villeneuve had to take to the grass on the last lap to pass the weaving Hill, who somehow managed to find second gear and crawled over the line for a podium finish.
Even Villeneuve agreed that Hill deserved to win, a point that no-one would argue.

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Photo credits : AP / F1Picturenet / Allsport