Mercedes AMG’s Lewis Hamilton wins the 2014 Formula One Chinese Grand PrixEnlarge Photo
Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso secured the third spot on the podium after a hard-fought battle with the two Red Bull Racing drivers Daniel Ricciardo, who finished fourth, and reigning world champion Sebastian Vettel, who took the fifth spot. It was another race where the Red Bull duo just didn’t have the pace despite qualifying well. Pole position went to Hamilton, with Ricciardo starting second, and Vettel and Rosberg filling the row behind them.
As the lights went out, Hamilton kept his lead, but Ricciardo got bogged down which allowed Vettel to go ahead, while Alonso got a blindingly quick run to move up two places to third colliding with a fast starting Filipe Massa in the Williams. On lap 5 of 56, the order was Hamilton already 4.1 seconds ahead of Vettel, with Alonso close in third.
With the temperature dropping and rain starting to fall, almost everyone visited the pits for a change to the softer medium tire. After this, Hamilton kept the lead, now 3.7 ahead of Alonso, who had Vettel 3.3 behind. Fourth was Rosberg and then came Ricciardo. Rosberg closed in on Vettel and the two men were wheel to wheel for several corners, with the Mercedes man eventually making it stick to go third on lap 22. Ricciardo also passed his teammate at this point.
With everyone having completed two stops, Hamilton was 12.7 ahead of Alonso, who had a 3.4 second lead over Rosberg. Then came Ricciardo fourth, followed by Vettel. Rosberg once again closed in the driver in front, in this case of Alonso, and on lap 42 the German was able to pass the Spaniard and thus the order was set to the flag.
The only drivers not to finish were Lotus’s Romain Grosjean, who suffered some gearbox trouble, and Sauber’s Adrian Sutil, who had issues with his car’s power unit.
Despite Hamilton’s victory, Rosberg keeps his lead in the Drivers’ Championship with 79 points, with Hamilton just 4 points behind on 75. Alonso now moves up to third with 41 points. In the Constructors’ Championship, Mercedes AMG leads with 154 points followed by Red Bull Racing on 57 and Force India on 54.
The next race takes place in three weeks and is the first European stop on the calendar, the Spanish Grand Prix, held at the Circuit de Catalunya just outside of Barcelona.
Below are top ten results of the 2014 Formula One Chinese Grand Prix:
1) Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG
2) Nico Rosberg, Mercedes AMG
3) Fernando Alonso, Ferrari
4) Daniel Ricciardo, Red Bull Racing
5) Sebastian Vettel, Red Bull Racing
6) Nico Hulkenberg, Force India
7) Valtteri Bottas, Williams
8) Kimi Räikkönen, Ferrari
9) Sergio Perez, Force India
10) Daniil Kvyat, Toro Rosso