Nico Rosberg Wins Bahrain Grand Prix as Hamilton and Vettel Struggle
By: S. Harding, Xiro Xone News April 03, 2016 Updated 7:46 PM
Mercedes driver Nico Rosberg took his second win of the 2016 Formula One season when he crossed the line in Sunday’s Bahrain Grand Prix, leaving teammate Lewis Hamilton 17 points behind after finishing third.
Rosberg didn’t have much to worry about due to the misfortune of Lewis Hamilton and Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel.
Vettel was forced to withdraw on the pre-race formation lap with smoke billowing from his engine like an old steam train.
Meanwhile, Lewis Hamilton, had another rough start from pole position before colliding with Valtteri Bottas of Williams at turn one.
Rosberg took the opportunity to take the lead, a position he would hold until the chequered flag .
"It's been an awesome weekend," Rosberg said. "The key was the start. I got a great getaway and from there I was just trying to control the race."
Vettel's teammate, Kimi Raikkonen, finished second while Hamilton with the will of a champion would battle back to finish third.
“I didn’t get a good start today – but it actually wasn’t as bad as the last one. They were completely different incidents – both painful, but this one probably more so! In Melbourne I had loads of wheel spin but this time I just didn’t get away as well as I needed to and that was down to me.
If you start on pole and go backwards it quickly becomes a domino effect. It’s so easy to get clipped from there and unfortunately that’s what happened at Turn One. Nonetheless, I managed to climb back up there and at least get some points, so again it was good damage limitation, said Hamilton.
Vettel, revealed his frustration at the "very sudden" nature of the incident that ended his race.
"I think we have reason to be confident (for the remainder of the season) but it caught us by surprise today," he added.
Lewis Hamilton is now second in the driver's title race, 17 points behind teammate Rosberg who has a maximum 50 points.
Red Bull’s Daniel Ricciardo lies third in the overall standings. Ricciardo finished fourth in Sunday race, one place ahead of Romain Grosjean of the Haas F1 team who had an outstanding result, in their second race as a new team.
“This is the American dream. It is unbelievable. I said we had to manage our expectations after we finished sixth in Australia, but here we finished fifth. There’s still a lot of things we can do better, from pit stops to the setup of the car and so on but, for now, this one is for the guys.
I looked at their faces last night and they were all very tired because of the amount of work we’re doing. This is a massive reward. Really, just unbelievable. In the race, I had a good feeling in the car. It was an aggressive strategy, but managing tires has always been my strength in the past. Knowing we had a softer compound for this racetrack was something I liked.
The car was set up well for the supersoft tires and I had a fantastic race. The car has a very good baseline. Everything is working well. I don’t think I’ve ever been as high as fifth in the driver standings. This is the first time in my career, I can’t believe it,” said Grosjean.
Toro Rosso’s Max Verstappen claimed sixth ahead of the second Red Bull driven by Daniil Kvyat.
Felipe Massa of Williams, Bottas in the second Williams and Belgian debutant Stoffel Vandoorne took the final points positions, finishing eighth, ninth and tenth respectively.
Vandoorne should be very excited having scored points in his F1 debut.
Stoffel Vandoorne filled in for former F1 champion Fernando Alonso, who is still recovering the injuries he sustained from his horrific crash last month in Melbourne.