Sebastian VettelEnlarge Photo
Joining Vettel on the podium were Lotus drivers Kimi Räikkönen and Romain Grosjean in second and third places, respectively. The Lotus pair put up quite a fight, with Grosjean passing Mercedes AMG’s Lewis Hamilton for second during the first lap. Räikkönen was further back but managed to make the most of the safety car periods and eventually move up the field.
The safety car came out for the first time on lap 36, as McLaren’s Sergio Perez suffered a tire failure on the back straight, leaving debris. Upon the arrival of the safety car, there was plenty of drama, including Vettel’s Red Bull Racing teammate Mark Webber suffering a spectacular fire in his car after Force India’s Adrian Sutil hit him.
It was around this point that Räikkönen charged past Grosjean to go second. Behind Vettel and the two Lotuses, Sauber’s Nico Hulkenberg finished fourth while Hamilton was fifth in the end. Then it was the Ferrari of Fernando Alonso, who tried valiantly to move up the field but was blocked on several attempts initially by Hulkenberg and then Hamilton.
The rest of the top ten was made up by Mercedes AMG’s other driver Nico Rosberg in seventh, McLaren’s Jenson Button in eighth, Ferrari man Felipe Massa in ninth and McLaren’s other driver Sergio Perez in the final spot.
With his latest win, Sebastian Vettel extends his Drivers’ Championship points tally to 272 points. Fernando Alonso remains second with 195 points while Kimi Räikkönen now replaces Lewis Hamilton in third with 167 points. In the Constructors’ Championship, Red Bull Racing commands 402 points versus the 284 points of Ferrari and the 283 points of Mercedes AMG.
The next race on the calendar is the Japanese Grand Prix, which takes place in a week.