Hamilton cruises to Russian Grand Prix victory

Hamilton cruises to Russian Grand Prix victory
4.00 6

Published October 12th, 2014 - 16:52 GMT via SyndiGate.info

Rate Article:

PRINT Send Mail
comment (0)
Lewis Hamilton
Lewis Hamilton

Lewis Hamilton claimed his fourth win a row with a commanding performance from the front in the inaugural Russian Grand Prix in Sochi Sunday.

Watched by Russian President Vladimir Putin in the paddock, Hamilton took the chequered flag on the 5.872-kilometre Olympic park circuit 13.657 seconds ahead of Mercedes team-mate Nico Rosberg.

Valtteri Bottas in a Williams was third, followed by McLaren duo Jenson Button and Kevin Magnussen, Fernando Alonso in a Ferrari, Red Bull pair Daniel Ricciardo and Sebastian Vettel, Ferrari's Kimi Raikkonen and Sergio Perez in a Force India.

It was the ninth victory of the season for the Hamilton, who extends his lead to 17 points over Rosberg (four wins) with three races remaining.

The ninth Mercedes one-two of the season also gave the team the constructors' title, its first as a works team, ending four years of domination by Red Bull.

Hamilton was praised by his team over radio for "an awesome drive".

Hamilton replied: "Well done to the team on the constructors' championship, history in the making." Drivers took part in a minute's silence to honour Jules Bianchi who is in a critical condition in hospital after crashing at last Sunday's Japanese Grand Prix.

The 21 drivers then stood arms in arm around the helmets at the front of the grid where the organizers beamed the message 'Jules, we are all supporting you' in capital letters onto the circuit.

Earlier, the entire Ferrari team sent a message of encouragement to Marussia driver Bianchi, who is a member of Ferrari's young drivers academy.

The race began with a setback for Rosberg, who locked up heavily in the first corner after going past Hamilton, starting from pole position.

The German was forced to run wide and was told over radio he would have to give the position back, but he immediately had to pit because of a flatspotted tyre.

Rosberg swapped from soft to medium tyres and gradually worked his way up the field as other began to pit for tyre changes with around half the 53 laps completed.

Hamilton came in for the first time for mediums on lap 27 and emerged with a lead of around 20 seconds over Rosberg, lying fourth behind Vettel and Bottas.

Vettel came in on lap 31 and Rosberg immediately successfully attacked Bottas. Feared tyre degradation for Rosberg later in the race never materialised and he was able to retain second place, with a rally by Bottas coming too late.

Hamilton stayed comfortably in front for the 29-year-old to earn his 31st career victory, putting him level with fellow Nigel Mansell as Britain's most successful F1 driver and joint sixth overall.

It was also the second time this season that Hamilton has won four races in a row following grands prix two to five at the start of the season.

No driver who has won four successive grands prix in a season has failed to win the championship, but F1's decision to award double points for the winner of the last race has changed the constellation.

© 2014 dpa GmbH

Add a new comment