Vettel storms to Canadian victory

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F1 Grand Prix, GP Canada, Circuit Gilles Villeneuveca

Sebastian Vettel has won the Canadian Grand Prix at Montreal in dominant fashion after starting from pole position. The fights were all happening behind him, with Alonso emerging in second place, followed by Lewis Hamilton who completes the podium for Mercedes AMG.

The sun is finally around at Canada at the start of the race.

With everybody able to choose the tyres freely after the wet qualifying session, everybody starts the race on the super soft tyres, except for DIR BIA CHI and GRO. Note that Di Resta is somewhat out of position and has a faster car than the guys around him. The same goes for Grosjean who is at the back of the grid following a 10 place grid penalty.


The start is clean with Vettel keeping the lead, ahead of Hamilton. Rosberg immediately moved up to third while Webber also passed Bottas after turn 3. The Ferrari of Alonso is also threatening but defensive driving from the Finn enabled him to keep the Spaniard behind until the final turn of the first lap.

The cars in front are breaking away quickly. By lap 4, Vettel is already 3 seconds ahead of Hamilton. Rosberg is another 2 seconds further down and only just ahead of Webber. Alonso is 3 seconds behind and gains time on Bottas who is seemingly holding up the cars behind him.

On lap 6, Vergne gets past the Williams to take P6 in turn 2. Sutil tries to sneek through as well in turn 3, but Bottas had none of that and kept the position, forcing Sutil to back out of the move and spin off. Sutil though managed to recover without damage and rejoined just behind Massa.

By lap 8, a lot of fighting is going on in the pack behind Ricciardo who is 8th. Raikkonen is right behind him, followed by Hulkenberg, Massa, Perez, Sutil and Button. Maldonado dropped back a bit in this pack after he ran into the back of Sutil while braking for the hairpin. At the start of lap 10 Massa gets past Hulkenberg to move up into 10th. The Brazilian has been impressive and immediately takes on Raikkonen who appears to be unable to attack Ricciardo.

Meanwhile goes a little wide on the exit of turn 3 and kisses the wall with his right rear tyre.

One lap later Raikkonen suddenly finds a lot of pace and attacks Ricciardo succesfully and soon gains a second on the Toro Rosso.

At lap 13 the first stops are being performed. Webber and Perez for instance make their stops in lap 14. Both changed to the medium tyre. Rosberg pits one lap later and rejoins the track just ahead of Webber as before the stop. Vettel pits at the end of lap 16, just like Alonso. Both change to the white medium tyres.

Massa pits on lap 18 and takes on a new set of supersofts. Hamilton pits only on lap 19 to change to the medium tyres.

On lap 23 Raikkonen pits from P6 and takes on the medium tyre in a troubled pitstop. The car slipped off the rear jack before the rear tyres were fitted, requiring the rear jack man to lift the car again. It cost at least 5 seconds extra. Raikkonen finds himself in 14th place as he rejoins the track. Lotus is trying to go for a single stop strategy but Raikkonen is already in fuel savings mode as his engineer informed him fuel consumption is higher than expected.

By lap 29 Weber is very close up behind Rosberg while Alonso is awaiting his moment as he's just tenths behind the Red Bull. Rosberg is starting to struggle with his supersoft tyres while the cars behind him are both on the medium tyres.

Massa meanwhile is fighting hard to get ahead of Sutil, but the German is defending aggressively.

On lap 30 Webber finally takes Rosberg in the final chicane while Alonso follows suit in turn 1 of the next lap by deploying half a KERS charge. This means now Vettel leads, 17s ahead of Hamilton. Webber is 10 seconds down on him and 1.5 seconds ahead of Alonso.

One lap later Rosberg pits in 3.1 seconds. He changes to mediums and gets back on track in 5th place.

At the halfway point, positions are: VAT HAM WEB ALO ROS VER DIR GRO SUT MAS PER BOT RAI HUL RIC BUT GUT MAL BIA CHI PIC VDG.

On lap 37 Van der Garde somehow got into the spotlights by ignoring blue flags. In fact Webber thought the Dutchman was allowing him to get past in the hairpin, but right when Webber took the apex, Van der Garde simply turned towards the inside as well. Webber bumped into the rear wheel of the Caterham and broke off the left front wing endplate. No further damage was done though, but VDG was subsequently given a 10 seconds stop and go penalty for ignoring blue flags and causing a collision.

Alonso meanwhile is constantly running within less than a second from Webber while the two are jointly closing the gap Hamilton in second place. In lap 41, the gap is 7.4 seconds.

In lap 42 Alonso gets past Webber after the Australian slightly missed his braking point in the hairpin of the previous lap. The next laps show that Alonso is slightly faster than Webber but is unable to considerably reduce the gap to Hamilton.

On lap 47 Webber pits for new medium tyres. Alonso follows suit and does the same one lap later. HE stays ahead of Webber. Hamilton pits another lap later, also for new medium tyres.

Van der Garde on the other hand managed another highlight as he managed to break his own front wing and Hulkenberg's rear tyre on the approach to the final chicane of lap 47. Note that Hulkenberg was lapping VDG, so one may consider that another error for the Dutchman. It's a DNF for both.

In lap 53, Vettel still leads, even after stopping for a new set of medium tyres. Hamilton is second, 15 seconds down. Alonso third on 3 seconds and Webber is another 2 seconds down.

On lap 57, Alonso laps his teammate and closed the gap to Hamilton down to 1.2 seconds. Webber on the other hand is no longer able to follow Alonso and is 6 seconds down on the Ferrari.

In that same lap, Di Resta makes his first pitstop of the race, completing an impressive 57 laps on the medium tyres.

In lap 59 Sutil gave Alonso an opportunity to close up to Hamilton. He moved out of the way when Alonso was right behind, but it cost him a drive through penalty.

On lap 63 Alonso then takes P2 as again he used KERS on the pit straight for a final push ahead of turn 1. Hamilton made a slight mistake in the last chicane before the hairpin that made him vulnerable for Alonso. The Spaniard of course was thankful and passed the Mercedes.

Two laps later Hamiton got back into a challenging position and with DRS deployed he had a try at the final chicane. He overshot it slightly though and broke a small part of his front wing on Alonso's left rear tyre.

On lap 67 Gutierrez is out of the race as he overshot his pit exit and ended up in the tyre barrier.

Results

Pos.NoDriverTeamLapsTimeGridPts
11Sebastian VettelRed Bull Racing-Renault70Winner125
23Fernando AlonsoFerrari70+14.4 secs618
310Lewis HamiltonMercedes AMG70+15.9 secs215
42Mark WebberRed Bull Racing-Renault70+25.7 secs512
59Nico RosbergMercedes AMG70+69.7 secs410
618Jean-Eric VergneSTR-Ferrari69+1 Lap78
714Paul di RestaForce India-Mercedes69+1 Lap176
84Felipe MassaFerrari69+1 Lap164
97Kimi RäikkönenLotus-Renault69+1 Lap102
1015Adrian SutilForce India-Mercedes69+1 Lap81
116Sergio PerezMcLaren-Mercedes69+1 Lap12
125Jenson ButtonMcLaren-Mercedes69+1 Lap14
138Romain GrosjeanLotus-Renault69+1 Lap22
1417Valtteri BottasWilliams-Renault69+1 Lap3
1519Daniel RicciardoSTR-Ferrari68+2 Laps11
1616Pastor MaldonadoWilliams-Renault68+2 Laps13
1722Jules BianchiMarussia-Cosworth68+2 Laps19
1820Charles PicCaterham-Renault67+3 Laps18
1923Max ChiltonMarussia-Cosworth67+3 Laps20
2012Esteban GutierrezSauber-Ferrari63+7 Laps15
Ret11Nico HulkenbergSauber-Ferrari45+25 Laps9
Ret21Giedo van der GardeCaterham-Renault43+27 Laps21