Under blue skies the Formula 1 race got underway with Lewis Hamilton on pole.
Under blue skies the Formula 1 race got underway with Lewis Hamilton on pole. The battle behind him was between Romain Grosjean and Fernando Alonso as he tried to hold onto his third place. A clash between Nico Rosberg and Felipe Massa caused the German to sustain damage and fall all the way back to 12th. By the end of lap 1 Hamilton had a 1.109 second lead over Sebastian Vettel. Jenson Button bounced back from his bad qualifying position to get up five places to 8th and race amongst the frontrunners, while his team mate Sergio Perez fell back to 10th.
Hamilton pitted on lap 10 and rejoined in 6th before overtaking his former team mate Button to take 5th.
By lap 16 Mark Webber was leading in the Red Bull having not pitted, with Hamilton and Button behind. A great scrap between Vettel, Grosjean and Button made the race interesting after the pitstops and damage to Vettel’s front end plate from hounding the back of Button caused Alonso to catch up to the battle.
In his 100th grand prix, Adrian Sutil had to retire with a hydraulic leak. Lap 23 saw Webber finally make his first pitstop. With the pack closing in on Button in third, Vettel got past the Brit as did Grosjean who then made contact with the McLaren driver forcing him very close to the grass. With Alonso also shooting past, Button had no option but to pit at the end of the lap.
With Hamilton leading Vettel by 13.7 seconds a battle was heating up between 6th placed Massa and Grosjean. With the Frenchman’s manoeuvre on Button under investigation, he went around the outside of the Ferrari driver at Turn Four to move up a place, which gave him a drive through penalty for leaving the track and gaining an advantage.
Lap 32 saw Hamilton pit for his second stop of the day which brought him out behind Webber. A daring move at Turn Two saw him get past the Australian and then he was all over the back of Alonso.
With just over 30 laps remaining Hamilton was leading with the Red Bulls of Vettel and Webber behind him. Valtteri Bottas brought out yellow flags on the start finish straight when his car was at the side of the track with engine failure. It was the Finn’s first non finish of the season.
Nico Rosberg also had the same problem on lap 66 and had to retire from the race.
Kimi Raikkonen had to put up with a quick Vettel as the race came to a close. With only 0.711 seconds splitting the two drivers the Finn had to resist the pressure from the Red Bull driver.
Lewis Hamilton took his first win of the season for Mercedes with Raikkonen just pipping Vettel to the chequered flag.
- Lewis Hamilton
- Kimi Raikkonen
- Sebastian Vettel
- Mark Webber
- Fernando Alonso
- Romain Grosjean
- Jenson Button
- Felipe Massa
- Sergio Perez
- Pastor Maldonado
- Nico Hulkenberg
- Jean Eric Vergne
- Daniel Ricciardo
- Giedo Van Der Garde
- Charles Pic
- Jules Bianchi
- Max Chilton