Hamilton defeats Vettel on strategy in Montreal

Lewis Hamilton took his fifth win in Montreal

Lewis Hamilton took his fifth win in Montreal

Lewis Hamilton made it back-to-back victories as Mercedes strategically out-played Ferrari in the Canadian Grand Prix.

Sebastian Vettel sensationally blasted past both Hamilton and team-mate Nico Rosberg off the start, cutting ahead of the Mercedes pair into Turn 1.

The German led Hamilton until lap 11 of 70, when the presence of a Virtual Safety Car to retrieve the stopped McLaren of Jenson Button saw Ferrari commit to a two-stop strategy.

Hamilton made his one and only stop on lap 24 and, after a short middle stint, Vettel made his second trip to pitlane 13 laps later.

Facing an eight second deficit over the remaining 32 laps, Vettel proved unable to seriously threaten the Mercedes, eventually taking the flag five seconds adrift.

“We overestimated the degradation of the tyres,” admitted Ferrari boss Maurizio Arrivabene post-race.

“That’s the reason why we called him in and it was the wrong decision. We made a mistake.”

The bulk of the field joined Ferrari in running two-stop strategies after deeming a single stop too marginal on tyres in the cool conditions.

Valtteri Bottas made a one-stop work to score Williams’ first podium of the season in third ahead of Red Bull’s Max Verstappen and championship leader Rosberg.

It was a fraught race for the second Mercedes driver, who was forced wide at Turn 1 on the opening lap after minor wheel-to-wheel contact with Hamilton.

Dropping to 10th, Rosberg appeared set for fourth when a puncture required a second stop late in the going.

Making short work of Kimi Raikkonen and Daniel Ricciardo after his unscheduled stop, Rosberg then suffered a wild spin into the final chicane on the penultimate lap while attempting to pass Verstappen.

Rosberg regained his composure to secure fifth ahead of Raikkonen, Ricciardo, Nico Hulkenberg, Carlos Sainz and Sergio Perez.

All three retirements were due to engine issues, which claimed Button’s McLaren, Felipe Massa’s Williams and Jolyon Palmer’s Renault.

The results see Hamilton cut Rosberg’s championship lead to just nine points after seven of 21 races.

Screen Shot 2016-06-13 at 6.26.08 AM

Championship standings

1 Nico Rosberg 116
2 Lewis Hamilton 107
3 Sebastian Vettel 78
4 Daniel Ricciardo 72
5 Kimi Raikkonen 69
6 Max Verstappen 50
7 Valtteri Bottas 44
8 Felipe Massa 37
9 Sergio Perez 24
10 Daniil Kvyat 22
11 Romain Grosjean 22
12 Fernando Alonso 18
13 Nico Hulkenberg 18
14 Carlos Sainz 18
15 Kevin Magnussen 6
16 Jenson Button 5
17 Stoffel Vandoorne 1
18 Esteban Gutierrez 0
19 Jolyon Palmer 0
20 Marcus Ericsson 0
21 Pascal Wehrlein 0
22 Felipe Nasr 0
23 Rio Haryanto 0

Join the discussion below in the Speedcafe.com comments section

Please note: Speedcafe.com reserves the right to remove any comment that does not follow the comment policy. For support, contact [email protected]