Lewis Hamilton takes dominant Spanish Grand Prix victory
By: S. Harding, Xiro Xone News May 13, 2018 Updated: 12:44 PM PT
BARCELONA, Spain — Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton took his 64th career victory as the reigning world champion drove off into the Barcelona sunset finishing with a 27s gap between him and championship rival Sebastian Vettel. Hamilton also takes his 30th consecutive points finish making him the first driver in the sports history to achieve this milestone.
“To get our first 1-2 of the season here is a really great result for the team. Everyone’s worked so hard, we had a great pit stop and great strategy. I said that I wanted to come win the way that I won and when I was coming across the line I was just happy that I did as I planned to,” Hamilton said.
Things got off to a chaotic start with a massive collision on the opening lap of the race. The collision happened when Haas driver Romain Grosjean lost the rear of his car on the outside of Turn 3, as he reacted to a sudden movement made by teammate Kevin Magnussen, this caused the rear of his car to swing round across the track collecting the Toro Rosso of Pierre Gasly and the Renault of Nico Hulkenberg. All three drivers were taken out of the race with Grosjean suffering his third retirement of the season.
Hamilton’s teammate, Valtteri Bottas, finished second to give Mercedes their first one-two finish of the season. Max Vertstappen finished an impressive third after suffering front wing damage from a small collision with the Williams of Sergey Sirotkin during the virtual safety car period. But, the damage didn’t stop the Dutchman from crossing the line with a 0.7s over Vettel even as the German driver took fresh rubber during the virtual safety car.
Sebastian Vettel finished fourth as he appeared to struggle in his attempt to catch Verstappen. Vettel’s fourth place finish makes the third time this season the four-time world champion has failed to make the podium. Ferrari teammate Kimi Raikkonen was forced to retire after his car began to loose power and had to inch his car back to the pits.
Verstappen’s teammate Daniel Ricciardo finished fifth with Kevin Magnussen as the sole Haas car to finish the race in sixth. Carlos Sainz and Fernando Alonso finished seventh and eighth respectively. Sergio Perez scored the only point for Force India after teammate Esteban Ocon was forced to pull his car to the side after he ran into engine trouble midway thru the race.
Sauber rookie Charles Leclerc enjoyed a small battle with two-time world champion Fernando Alonso to finish tenth, giving the Swiss team the third points-scoring finish of the season. After five rounds, Hamilton now extends his championship lead to seventeen points as F1 heads to the crown jewel of the season in Monaco in just two weeks.
Big announcements to kick off the weekend
The weekend saw big announcements kick off the European season with Formula One moving forward to secure a second race in Miami as well as renewed partnerships with familiar brands including long time sponsor Emirates who will be the title sponsor of the upcoming German Grand Prix later this season.