Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso, meanwhile, showed yet again why he may just be the best driver among the current crop of F1 stars. Despite starting the race in ninth position, the Spaniard managed to fight his way up to second. Unfortunately there was no chance of him passing Vettel as the gap between the two drivers was 16.8 seconds after 44 laps.
Hamilton had to settle for third place. He enjoyed a good start from pole but couldn’t match the pace of Vettel and Alonso. His teammate at Mercedes AMG, Nico Rosberg, finished behind him in fourth.
There wasn’t much action down the line. Vettel’s Red Bull Racing teammate Mark Webber suffered a bad start but managed to fight his way up the grid and challenge Hamilton for third. However, he lost pace towards the end and had to settle for fifth place.
McLaren’s Jenson Button momentarily led the race following some pit stops on lap 16, though Vettel quickly regained the position and Button was subsequently passed by the rest of the top order. He finished the race in sixth place, ahead of Ferrari’s Felipe Massa in seventh, Lotus’ Romain Grosjean in eighth, Force India’s Adrian Sutil ninth and Toro Rosso’s Daniel Ricciardo rounding out the top ten. In related news, Webber strongly hinted that fellow Aussie Ricciardo would be his replacement at Red Bull Racing from next season on.
Sadly, Lotus’ other driver Kimi Räikkönen had to retire midway due to brake problems.
As mentioned, Sebastian Vettel’s latest win sees his points tally in the Drivers’ Championship extend to 197 points. Fernando Alonso remains in second with 151 points while Lewis Hamilton moves into third 139 points. In the Constructors’ Championship, Red Bull Racing commands 312 points versus the 235 points of Mercedes AMG and the 218 points of Ferrari.
Teams will now prepare for the 2013 Italian Grand Prix at the Monza race track, taking place in two weeks.