Brazilian Grand Prix: Sebastian Vettel finishes ahead of Valtteri Bottas at Interlagos
By: S. Harding, Xiro Xone News November 12, 2017 Updated: 10:44 PM
SAO PAULO, Brazil -- Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel took his fifth win of the season giving himself a much needed boost after losing the driver's championship two weeks ago in Mexico.
Vettel was off into the sunset after having a strong start, jumping in front of pole sitter Valtteri Bottas for the lead leaving the Finnish driver in second. Joining Vettel and Bottas on the podium was fellow Finnish and Ferrari driver Kimi Raikkonen in third.
“I think this was one of the most difficult races of the season, there was no time for mistakes. My start was not perfect, but enough to beat Bottas off the line. Then, Valtteri was always very close and we had the same pace, but I pushed very hard and managed to pull a gap. This win is very important for me and for the team," said Vettel.
Newly crowned champion Lewis Hamilton was able to let his hair down and turn everything up on his W08 to make a strong charge up the field to finish fourth after starting from the pit lane. Hamilton started closing in on Raikkonen after his second stop but his tires began to fall away preventing him from continuing his charge on Raikkonen.
"it felt like the go-karting days where I would always start in the back in my first year or two. My goal today was really to just try and redeem yesterday’s mistake, to make the team proud and get some points back. I was trying to get back to third, I just ran out of tyres in the end. But I enjoyed the battle today and hopefully that continues to show to everyone that I still have a lot of fire in my heart and many, many more races to go," Hamilton said.
Red Bull's Max Verstappen,who had very impressive drive in the wet last year, finished fifth ahead of teammate Daniel Ricciardo in sixth, who also had a stready recovery drive after starting 14th.
Felipe Massa had a strong drive in his final Brazilian Grand Prix finishing seventh after mixing it up with McLaren's Fernando Alonso in eighth. After the race, Massa received a heart felt message from his son over the radio.
"Daddy I'm so proud of you and wherever you go I will support. I love you. By the way, I loved your start!," He said.
Shortly after the podium interviews Massa had a chance to stand on top of the podium with his son and address has home crowd for the last time.
"I’m really emotional today, because of all you guys. So thank you very much for everything that we passed together. For all the support, for all the energy that I felt today here, for making the best race I could, and to be honest I’m so happy for my race. I did the best of the car, what the car could achieve. So thank you, thank you very much, all of you guys," said Massa
Alonso's teammate Stoffel Vandoorne did not make it to the checkered flag after colliding with Kevin Magnussen at Turn 2. Sergio Perez was the sole Force India to make it across the finish line in ninth after his teammate Esteban Ocon made heavy contact with Haas driver Romain Grosjean heading into to Turn 7.
Toro Rosso and Renault continue their battle for sixth in the constructor's championship with Nico Hulkenberg finishing tenth and Carlos Sainz in 11th with four points separating the two teams.
After starting from 19th, Toro Rosso's Pierre Gasly had a strong finish in 12th with teammate Brendon Hartley ran into trouble and was forced to retire.
The Saubers of Marcus Ericsson and Pascal Wehrlein finished 13th and 14th. Romain Grosjean finished 15th after he received a 10-second time penalty for his incident with Esteban Ocon. Lance Stroll was the final car to finish Sunday's race in 16th.