F1 2013

Sebastian Vettel and Red Bull coast to runaway victory at Canada Grand Prix 2013

German Red Bull driver Sebastian Vettel strolled to victory, while Spanish Scuderia Ferrari driver Fernando Alonso finished in second place and British Mercedes AMG driver Lewis Hamilton crossed the finish line in third place.

Although the crowd following the Candian Grand Prix was kept entertained in a fierce late-race fight for second place on Sunday afternoon, German Red Bull driver Sebastian Vettel was in a class of its own as he finally broke the Montreal bad luck in a very dominant and relaxed style.

Sebastian Vettel’s initial pace suggested to the race followers and his competitors, that he seemed to be on a three-stop strategy, but it soon became very evident that he was not and that nobody was going to be able to challenge his lead, except a mechanical failure, driving mistake or an accident. He was even able to brush the wall of champions on the 10th lap, and then make an uncharacteristic mistake in the first corner on the 52nd, without being even distantly threatened. This driving mistake while leading the race reminds all Formula 1 fanatics of the 2000 Indianapolis Grand Prix, where with just over four laps to go, Michael Schumacher hooked his right front wheel over the curb and spun onto the wet grass. He returned to the track in the lead and radioed his crew, "Don't worry, I am awake now".

During the peak performance phase of British Mercedes AMG driver Lewis Hamilton exploited the maximum capacity of his car, leaving his Mercedes AMG team mate Nico Rosberg well behind, and seemed to have second wind until Spanish Scuderia Ferrari driver Fernando Alonso launched a blazing attack in the final stint to tear a 10-second deficit to nothing. Lewis Hamilton lost time lapping both Alonso’s team mate Brazilian Scuderia Ferrari driver Felipe Massa and the Force India of Adrian Sutil, and could not stop the Ferrari from overtaking him on the 63rd lap. He tried to counter-attack on the 64th lap, and on both occasions the pair seemed to make light contact, but admitted later that they enjoyed this wheel-to-wheel duel.

Australian Red Bull driver Mark Webber should have been a contender for the podium too but his race was spoiled when Caterham’s Giedo van der Garde inadvertently turned into the hairpin with Mark Webber alongside him on the 36th lap, damaging the Red Bull’s left-front endplate, which affected the aerodynamics and down force of the car. That left him to take a distant fourth, but well ahead of German Mercedes AMG driver Nico Rosberg.

Jean-Eric Vergne took an excellent sixth for Toro Rosso after the best race of his Formula One career, while Force India’s Paul di Resta started from 17th on Pirelli’s medium tires and climbed to seventh before switching to the super-soft tires on the 56th lap. He maintained that position, but Force India driver Adrian Sutil, who was lucky to overcome a spin in Turn 2 early on while fighting Bottas for sixth, lost his chance of eighth when he was given a drive-through penalty for ignoring blue flags during the amazing Lewis Hamilton/ Fernando Alonso fight. He finished 10th, behind Felipe Massa and Lotus's Kimi Raikkonen, whose solid chances in a one-stop race were ruined by a problem with the rear jack. The car went down, before the rear left wheel was fitted. While the fastest pit stop on the one hand took 20.212 seconds on lap 27 and was performed on the Vodafone McLaren Mercedes of Jenson Button, the one and only pit stop of Kimi Raikkonen, which was performed on lap 22, took on the other hand a whopping 25.182 seconds, thus ruining any chances to score higher than the modest 9th place. The Finn did equal Michael Schumacher’s record of 24 consecutive points finishes with his ninth place.

Vodafone McLaren Mercedes drivers Sergio Perez and Jenson Button did two- and one-stop races respectively but could not finish higher than 11th and 12th, the Englishman was very frustrated to discover that the tires could have easily withstood faster lap times than he was given to adhere to in order to make the one-stop strategy practicable .

French Lotus driver Romain Grosjean, like Paul Di Resta, had a long stint after starting on the medium tires, but did not get much mileage out of his super-soft set and had to stop for another set of mediums, thus dropping him from eighth to 13th ahead of third-place qualifier Valtteri Bottas whose Williams lacked the pace to remain close to the front. Team mate Pastor Maldonado made an extra pit stop after getting a drive-through penalty for a collision with Adrian Sutil in the early phases of the race. Between them came the Torro Rosso of Daniel Ricciardo.

The Marussia of Jules Bianchi comfortably headed the Caterham of Charles Pic and team mate Max Chilton as the final finishers. Esteban Gutierrez crashed his Sauber at Turn 2 immediately after exiting the pits on the 64th lap, while his team mate Nico Hulkenberg collided with Van der Garde as they braked for Turn number 14. The Dutchman lost his front wing and did not make it to the finish line, while the German also stopped beside the track with a punctured left-rear tire. Van der Garde was subsequently handed a five-place grid penalty for the next round for causing the incident.

The Candian 2013 Grand Prix race result puts Sebastian Vettel well ahead in the 2013 Formula 1 drivers' championship with 132 points to Fernando Alonso’s 96, Kimi Raikkonen’s 88, Lewis Hamilton’s 77 and Mark Webber’s 69, while in the 2013 Formula 1 constructor standings Red Bull have 201 to Ferrari’s 145, Mercedes’ 134 and Lotus’s 114.

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