Alonso cruises to Silverstone win
11 June 2006 – Fernando Alonso took an easy victory at the British Grand Prix ahead of Michael Schumacher and Kimi Raikkonen. The Spaniard's thirteenth Grand Prix win and his fifth of the season takes him 23 points clear of Schumacher in the championship.
It was another hot day at Silverstone as the cars lined up on the grid. Alonso made a good start to lead Raikkonen and Schumacher into the first corner while behind them Scott Speed pitched Ralf Schumacher into a spin and the German collected Mark Webber in the process. The safety car was deployed while marshals removed the stricken Williams and Toyota while Speed recovered to the pit lane.
The safety car came in at the end of lap three as Alonso led Raikkonen, Schumacher, Massa, Fisichella, Heidfeld, Barrichello and Montoya. Raikkonen challenged Alonso down the outside of Stowe corner but could not make it stick and instead gave Schumacher a run around the outside of Abbey. The Finn defended firmly and as the pair almost touched Raikkonen retained the position.
Lap ten saw the end of Jenson Button's dreadful weekend as the left-hand bank of cylinders in his V8 Honda engine blew up and sent him off into the gravel at Brooklands.
Michael Schumacher was the first of the leading trio to pit on lap 18 - until then he was right on Raikkonen's tail. The Finn pitted on the next lap and rejoined comfortably ahead of the German. At the front Alonso cruised on until lap 21 and rejoined the race comfortably ahead of Raikkonen and Schumacher.
The race settled into a calm middle period after the first pit stops with Alonso maintaining an eleven-second lead over Raikkonen and Schumacher.
Michael Schumacher was the first of the leaders in for his second pit stop of the afternoon on lap 41. Raikkonen responded on the next lap, pulling into the pits for his second stop as Michael Schumacher fired in the fastest second and third sectors of any driver that far in the race and sailed past the Finn for second place.
The rest of the race was a very sedate affair. Fernando Alonso cruised home to his fifth win of the season, his third straight victory and the thirteenth if his career. Schumacher's extra effort at the second pit stops meant he limits the damage to the championship by two points. Alonso now leads the German by 23 in the drivers' battle.
Kimi Raikkonen settled for third bringing home Giancarlo Fisichella and Felipe Massa. Juan Pablo Montoya collected three more points for sixth while BMW crowned a strong weekend with a double-points finish for Heidfeld in seventh and Villeneuve in eighth.