Lewis Hamilton WINS the Spanish Grand Prix in a Mercedes 1-2
May 14, 2018, 04:59
Mercedes' Lewis Hamilton cruised to an easy victory in the F1 Spanish Grand Prix as he recorded back-to-back wins for the first time since the 2017 Formula 1 Japanese and USA events.Hamilton did.
He took pole position in qualifying in a Mercedes lockout of the front row, and was never seriously challenged from the moment the race began. Team mate Valtteri Bottas took second place while Red Bull'sMax Verstappen took third place after a botched pit stop ruined Sebastian Vettel's chance of making podium during a virtual safety auto stint.
Hamilton stayed out until lap 25 and slotted back in behind the yet-to-stop Verstappen, who had profited from the exit of Kimi Raikkonen mere minutes before.
Mercedes has struggled compared to Ferrari at times this season, with Sebastian Vettel winning the opening two races and taking three consecutive pole positions as the Scuderia had a more consistent vehicle.
"Today the vehicle and myself, I felt that synergy which I hadn't been feeling for the whole year", he added in a pre-podium interview after parking up in pit lane.
The German, who made a good start, was second until he took an ill-judged second pit-stop, under Virtual Safety Car conditions, midway through the race, dropping two places. "I've not had pole for a while", Hamilton said.
It was a fairly straightforward win for Mercedes and Lewis Hamilton. I know it sounds weird but today is the closest I think I've been but there are still areas that weren't quite ideal.
Alonso, though, was the only McLaren driver to reach the chequered flag after team-mate Stoffel Vandoorne lost drive, albeit while running outside of the points-paying positions.
"Of course I wanted to fight for the win", he said.
The champion had sounded very different in Azerbaijan two weekends ago, when a 63rd victory fell into his lap after Mercedes team mate Valtteri Bottas suffered a puncture while leading with three laps to go. "I would like to hope it could be part of the turning point". Sergio Perez took ninth in his Force India, and Sauber finished with one point, courtesy of Charles LeClerc in 10th.
Vettel won in Australia and Bahrain, while Ricciardo was first in China.
In total, six cars failed to finish.
The safety car's appearance was brought about by a huge crash that saw Nico Hulkenberg and Pierre Gasly wiped out by a spinning Romain Grosjean on the opening lap. The next race on the calendar is the Monaco Grand Prix on 27 May. What had looked at first sight like questionable strategy was actually, they said, just the auto going through its tyres quicker than others.
Later reports suggested Vettel may have been forced into the stop due to an issue with his rear tyres. McLaren's Stoffel Vandoorne also retired because of a auto failure, as did Esteban Ocon with Force India.
Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel says his team were right to pit as they were getting through tyres quicker than other cars.
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