Grand Prix Review: Shanghai, Round 3

Qualifying

Mercedes finished in their typical one-two fashion as Rosberg was just a shade off from Hamilton at 0.04s. The usual second row was fought out by the Ferrari’s and Williams cars. Kimi Raikkonen is “frustrated” by his bad habits in qualifying after he failed to set a quick lap, thus slotting himself eighth on the grid.  As for the rest of the drivers, they filled their expected positions. McLaren once again lined up at the back of the grid with no real change in fast lap pace. Roughly one second behind them came the Manor duo.

Mercedes Formula One driver Rosberg of Germany drives during the qualifying session of the Chinese F1 Grand Prix at the Shanghai International Circuit

Results

Pos No Name Team Q1 Q2 Q3 Laps
1 44 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1:38.285 1:36.423 1:35.782 12
2 6 Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1:38.496 1:36.747 1:35.824 12
3 5 Sebastian Vettel Ferrari 1:37.502 1:36.957 1:36.687 17
4 19 Felipe Massa Williams 1:38.433 1:37.357 1:36.954 15
5 77 Valtteri Bottas Williams 1:38.014 1:37.763 1:37.143 15
6 7 Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 1:37.790 1:37.109 1:37.232 17
7 3 Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull Racing 1:38.534 1:37.939 1:37.540 18
8 8 Romain Grosjean Lotus 1:38.209 1:38.063 1:37.905 20
9 12 Felipe Nasr Sauber 1:38.521 1:38.017 1:38.067 16
10 9 Marcus Ericsson Sauber 1:38.941 1:38.127 1:38.158 15
11 13 Pastor Maldonado Lotus 1:38.563 1:38.134 13
12 26 Daniil Kvyat Red Bull Racing 1:39.051 1:38.209 13
13 33 Max Verstappen Toro Rosso 1:38.387 1:38.393 14
14 55 Carlos Sainz Toro Rosso 1:38.622 1:38.538 14
15 11 Sergio Perez Force India 1:38.903 1:39.290 10
16 27 Nico Hulkenberg Force India 1:39.216 6
17 22 Jenson Button McLaren 1:39.276 6
18 14 Fernando Alonso McLaren 1:39.280 8
19 28 Will Stevens Marussia 1:42.091 6
20 98 Roberto Merhi Marussia 1:42.842 8
Q1 107% Time 1:44.327

Race day

Lewis Hamilton lined his car up virtually perpendicular to his once friend now rival teammate, Nico Rosberg. Lewis knew his German teammate has had success in China before and is somewhat of a Shanghai specialist. Tucked up behind him was Sebastian Vettel, keen to tickle around Lewis as best he could. The five red lights went out and the battle commenced. Lewis held first place going into the first bend as Vettel had no chance to challenge the lead. The quadruple champion had to defend his Red Barron from the Williams of Felipe Massa.

The race seemed to continue with little flamboyance. Kimi quickly caught up to his fellow Ferrari man and maintained a consistent gap throughout the race, as did Nico to Lewis. The gap between Mercedes and Ferrari seems to be closer than we would have hoped for this year. It is great news for fans to see the Scuderia back up to its podium standards as they have made it 3/3 podiums thus far.

As for Red Bull and Renault, their hopes of restoring a once proseperous relationship ended up in smoke, quite literally. The engine of Danil Kvyat gave in and the Russian now seems to be facing an inevitable penalty for using more engines this season than allocated. A few doors down the pitlane and Toro Rosso seemed to be thrilled with the pace of young gun Max Verstappen. The Dutchman was racing as if he had a worlds worth of experience, even when he is only 17 years old, and only just one year out of karting. He just seemed so casual. So natural. But, like the spoiled Red Bull car of Kyvat, Max’s car too, did not finish the race, and he was forced to quit with a failure two laps to the end. For the sixth time in history, the race finished under a safety car and drew a close to an anti-climactic, by the book weekend.

gpr34

Results

1 LEWIS HAMILTON GBR MERCEDES 1:39:42.008 25
2 NICO ROSBERG GER MERCEDES +0.714s 18
3 SEBASTIAN VETTEL GER FERRARI +2.988s 15
4 KIMI RÄIKKÖNEN FIN FERRARI +3.835s 12
5 FELIPE MASSA BRA WILLIAMS +8.544s 10
6 VALTTERI BOTTAS FIN WILLIAMS +9.885s 8
7 ROMAIN GROSJEAN FRA LOTUS +19.008s 6
8 FELIPE NASR BRA SAUBER +22.625s 4
9 DANIEL RICCIARDO AUS RED BULL +32.117s 2
10 MARCUS ERICSSON SWE SAUBER +1 lap 1
11 SERGIO PEREZ MEX FORCE INDIA +1 lap 0
12 FERNANDO ALONSO ESP MCLAREN +1 lap 0
13 JENSON BUTTON GBR MCLAREN +1 lap 0
14 CARLOS SAINZ ESP TORO ROSSO +1 lap 0
15 WILL STEVENS GBR MARUSSIA +2 laps 0
16 ROBERTO MERHI ESP MARUSSIA +2 laps 0
17 MAX VERSTAPPEN NED TORO ROSSO DNF 0
RT PASTOR MALDONADO VEN LOTUS DNF 0
RT DANIIL KVYAT RUS RED BULL DNF 0
RT NICO HULKENBERG GER FORCE INDIA DNF 0

Fastest lap – Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes, 1m 42.208s (lap 31)

Dane Hansen

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About dphansen24

I am an avid freelance Formula 1 writer and blogger. My writings are diverse and range from historical insights, to thorough and exciting analysis of the modern era and the topics that come with it. I am also able to take in requests from readers that wish to gain vision into particular stories. All are welcome. I encourage constructive criticism and conversation in comments or via email. My passion for the world’s fastest show consumes my daily efforts and I am always enthused to write about the sport I love most. Even as a pundit, I too have a curiosity and am always ready to learn more about an ever expanding sport.

Posted on April 12, 2015, in Grand Prix in Review and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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