Chinese GP 2017

APRIL 9, 2017

Race Notes - Hamilton wins Chinese Grand Prix

Start, Chinese GP 2017
© RV Press


Lewis Hamilton won the Chinese Grand Prix in Shanghai today in his Mercedes GP, in a race that started in gray, damp but drying conditions, 6.2 seconds over the Ferrari of Sebastian Vettel in second place and a stunning drive by Verstappen (45.1s), after starting in 16th to finish in third place in his Red Bull.

The championship after two races is tied between Hamilton and Vettel, both with 43 points.

The win was Hamilton‘‚  s 54th career victory, and his fifth win in China, after his sixth Chinese pole yesterday.

Daniel Ricciardo, battling his Red Bull team mate into the final lap finished fourth, followed by Kimi Raikkonen (48.0s) in the second Ferrari in fifth, Valterri Bottas (48.8s) in the second Mercedes, after battling back from an early spin finished sixth, Carlos Sainz (72.8s) in the Toro Rosso finished in seventh, Kevin Magnussen (1 lap) in the Haas-Ferrari was eighth, Sergio Perez in the Force India-Mercedes was ninth, and his team mate Esteban Ocon finishing in the final points postion in tenth place.

Before the start is was gray and cloudy. All drivers starting on intermediates, except for Sainz starting on a set of supersoft dry tyres.

As the lights turn Hamilton gets out in the lead from pole, ahead of Vettel and Bottas - Ricciardo passes Raikkonen for fourth.

Halfway around the first lap Stroll makes contact with Perez and winds up in the gravel trap.

Verstappen has passes Alonso for 11th, and keeps moving through the field.

Hulkenberg pits for soft tyres.

The virtual saftey car is deployed.

Many cars pit.

On the end of lap 3, the virtual safety car is over and the race begins again. Giovvinazzi crashes again on the front straight - for the second time of the weekend.

Hamilton, Bottas, Ricciardo, Raikkonen, Verstappen and Vettel all pit.

Behind the safety car Hamilton leads Ricciardo, Raikkonen, Verstappen, Bottas, Vettel, Sainz, Alonso, Kvyat and Massa in tenth. Hamilton, Raikkonen, Bottas, Vettel, Alonso, and Kvyat on soft tyres - Ricciardo, Verstappen and Sainz on supersoft tyres.

On lap 7 Hamilton complains that it is hard to keep heat in the tyres - while cleanup continues.

Bottas spins while behind the saftey car and falls to 12th.

At the end of lap 7 the safety car pits and the race starts again.

Hamilton leads Ricciardo, Verstappen, Raikkonen, Vettel, Alonso, Sainz, Perez, Kvyat, and Magnussen in tenth.

Verstappen passes Raikkoen for third, Raikkonen complaining of having no torque from his engine.

On lap 8 Sainz sets fast lap at 1m48.747s, and then again the next lap at 1m42,693s.

The first five runners are following in a line.

On lap 10 Raikkonen seets fast lap at 1m41.492s.

On lap 11 Verstappen passes his team mate Ricciardo for second place, then sets fast lap at 1m40.405s - and trails Hamilton by 1.5 seconds.

On lap 12 Hamilton sets fast lap at 1m39.358s.Bottas is up to tenth place.

Bottas sets fast lap at 1m39.117s. Raikkonen and Vettel close on Ricciardo in third.

On lap 15 Hamilton sets fast lap at 1m38.124s.

Hulkenberg is handed a 5-second time penalty for passing Ericsson under the safety car.

Hamilton has stretched his lead over Verstappen to 3.6 seconds.

On lap 18 Vandoorne is dropping down the order with a problem, and he pits and retires.

On lap 19 Bottas passes Magnussen for ninth place.

Bottas sets fast lap at 1m38.071s, Vettel passes Raikkonen for fourth place at turn 6.

At lap 20 Hamilton leads Verstappen by 3.4 seconds, followed by Ricciardo (8.9s), Vettel (9.4s), Raikkonen (10.3s), Sainz (15.3s), Alonso (27.3s), Bottas (33.3s), Magnussen (39.6s) and Ocon (52.3s) in tenth place.

Hamilton tells Mercedes that he thinks he can make it to the end of the race on his current soft tyres.

On lap 22 Vettel battles with Ricciardo - the two touch but continue, Vettel taking third place.

Hamilton sets fast lap at 1m38.560s and has a 5.3s lead over Verstappen.

Bottas is closing on Alonso in seventh place.

On lap 23 Vettel sets fast lap at 1m37.505s.

On lap 25 Massa pits. Bottas passes Alonso for seventh. Vettel closes to two seconds behind Verstappen in second place.

Raikkonen asks the team ‘‚   do we really think that the tyres will last to the end of the race? Because it doesn‘‚  t feel like it.‘‚  Å“

Palmer and Grosjean battle for 13th place. Grosjean getting past.

On lap 28 Verstappen locks up his brakes and Vettel passes him for second place. Verstappen complains that his left front is shot, and pits the next lap for more supersoft tyres.

Hamilton sets fast lap as he leads Vettel.

At lap 30 Hamilton leads Vettel by 11.6 seconds, followe by Ricciardo (19.2s), Raikkonen (20.4s), Bottas (38.4s), Verstappen (40.1s), Alonso (48.2s), Sainz (50.4s), Magnussen (59.1s) and Perez (63.5s) in tenth place.

Sainz sets fast lap at 1m37.398s, then Verstappen the next lap at 1m36.722s.

Verstappen on new tyres is closing on Bottas in fifth.

Hamilton sets the fast lap at 1n36.711s. Magnussen pits. Verstappen passes Verstappen for fifth place.

On lap 34 Ricciardo pits for another set of supersoft tyres. Sainz passes Alonso for seventh place.

On lap 35 Vettel pits for new soft tyres, and comes out third. Alonso pulls off and retires with a driveshaft failure. Bottas pits for new soft tyres.

On lap 36 Hamilton pits for more soft tyres, and resumes in the lead.

On lap 38 Bottas sets fast lap at 1m36.177s.

Grosjean chases Hulkenberg for 12th place.

Bottas sets another fast lap at 1m35.912s.

On lap 39 Raikkonen pits from second place for supersoft tyres, and resumes in sixth place.

Vettel sets fast lap at 1m35.423s.

At lap 40 Hamilton leads Vettel by 8.1 seconds, followed by Verstappen (16.9s), Ricciardo

(21.2s), Raikkonen (35.7s), Sainz (36.5s), Bottas (39.9s), Perez (60.4s), Magnussen (70.6s) and Ocon (77.9s) in tenth place.

Hamilton asks ‘‚   how‘‚  s the gap come down from 12 to 8 seconds?‘‚  Å“

Bottas chases Sainz for sixth place.

On lap 44 Hamilton respondsand sets fast lap at 1m35.378s.

Bottas passes Sainz for sixth place.

Ocon battles and passes Massa for tenth place.

On lap 49 Magnussen passes Perez for eighth place.

Ricciardo is closing on his team mate Verstappen in third place.

At lap 50 Hamilton leads Vettel b 7.6 seconds, followed by Verstappen (34.5s), Ricciardo (35.2s), Raikkonen (43.4s), Bottas (46.6s), Sainz (58.5s), Magnussen (91.5s), Perez (1 lap) and Ocon in tenth place.

Ricciardo continued to close on Verstappen in the final laps, Hamilton winning over Vettel and Verstappen.