Vettel storms to commanding Canadian GP win

Sebastian Vettel

Sebastian Vettel produced a faultless lights-to-flag drive to score a convincing victory at the Canadian Grand Prix and take the lead in the championship.

The Ferrari driver made no mistakes from pole position to hold onto his advantage at the start as Mercedes’ Valtteri Bottas fended off Red Bull’s Max Verstappen for second.

Vettel quickly stormed into a healthy lead once racing resumed after an opening lap Safety Car caused by a spectacular crash involving Toro Rosso’s Brendon Hartley and Williams’ Lance Stroll.

Hartley found himself on the outside of a fast starting Stroll, who momentarily slid wide at Turn 5, resulting in contact with the Toro Rosso that had started from 12th on the grid.

Brendon Hartley exited the race on the opening lap pic: F1 Twitter

The clash saw forced Hartley to ride up the barriers briefly before being pitched across the road as both he and Stroll careered into the barriers at Turn 6.

Both drivers climbed from their cars although Hartley was transferred to hospital for precautionary scans.

However, at the front Vettel proved untouchable leading every lap of the race to take the chequered flag which was mistakenly waved a lap early.

The victory has seen the German assume the championship lead by a point from Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton.

Bottas emerged as Vettel’s nearest rival closing to within three seconds of the Ferrari early in the race before the lead extended to 5.8s after the lead group completed their one and only stops.

He produced a charge in the final 15 laps that saw the Finn threaten to provide a grandstand finish, but a lock up forced him wide at Turn 1 which undid his hard work.

In the end, Bottas was left to settle for second spot while the final podium place was claimed by Red Bull’s Verstappen.

The Dutchman briefly attacked Bottas for second on the opening lap but that was as close as he came to improving upon his grid position in what proved to be relatively lonely race.

Team-mate Daniel Ricciardo made the most ground of the top six runners as he leapfrogged Kimi Raikkonen (Ferrari) on the start before then jumping Hamilton in the pits for fourth.

The Monaco Grand Prix winner held off the Brit, who struggled for much of the race, although he did come under pressure in the final laps as Hamilton homed in on the Australian.

Ricciardo did just enough to hold Hamilton for fourth.

Raikkonen finished in sixth having been unable to match the pace shown by his opposite number Vettel.

Nico Hulkenberg scored valuable points in seventh ahead of Renault team-mate Carlos Sainz, who was involved in an earlier clash with Force India’s Sergio Perez.

The incident at Turn 1 saw Perez drop to 13th where he remained at the finish, before being demoted to 14th due to an earlier classification of the results due to the premature chequered flag.

His Force India team-mate Esteban Ocon came home in ninth, while Charles Leclerc impressed once again to claim the final championship point for Sauber.

Toro Rosso’s Pierre Gasly drove from the final row of the grid after an engine change to 11th in front of Romain Grosjean, who came from last to 12th position for Haas F1.

McLaren’s Fernando Alonso was the only other retirement from the race after suffering a loss of power on lap 43 of the race.

The championship heads back to Europe for the return of the French Grand Prix at the Paul Ricard Circuit from June 22-24.

Results: Formula 1 Canadian Grand Prix

Position Driver Car Laps Gap
1 Sebastian Vettel Ferrari 68 1h28m31.377s
2 Valtteri Bottas Mercedes 68 7.376s
3 Max Verstappen Red Bull/Renault 68 8.360s
4 Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull/Renault 68 20.892s
5 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 68 21.559s
6 Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 68 27.184s
7 Nico Hulkenberg Renault 67 1 Lap
8 Carlos Sainz Renault 67 1 Lap
9 Esteban Ocon Force India/Mercedes 67 1 Lap
10 Charles Leclerc Sauber/Ferrari 67 1 Lap
11 Pierre Gasly Toro Rosso/Honda 67 1 Lap
12 Romain Grosjean Haas/Ferrari 67 1 Lap
13 Kevin Magnussen Haas/Ferrari 67 1 Lap
14 Sergio Perez Force India/Mercedes 67 1 Lap
15 Marcus Ericsson Sauber/Ferrari 66 2 Laps
16 Stoffel Vandoorne McLaren/Renault 66 2 Laps
17 Sergey Sirotkin Williams/Mercedes 66 2 Laps
DNF Fernando Alonso McLaren/Renault 40 Retirement
DNF Lance Stroll Williams/Mercedes 0 Collision
DNF Brendon Hartley Toro Rosso/Honda 0 Collision

Drivers’ Championship Standings

Pos Driver Points
1 Sebastian Vettel 121
2 Lewis Hamilton 120
3 Valtteri Bottas 86
4 Daniel Ricciardo 84
5 Kimi Raikkonen 68
6 Max Verstappen 50
7 Fernando Alonso 32
8 Nico Hulkenberg 32
9 Carlos Sainz 24
10 Kevin Magnussen 19
11 Pierre Gasly 18
12 Sergio Perez 17
13 Esteban Ocon 11
14 Charles Leclerc 10
15 Stoffel Vandoorne 8
16 Lance Stroll 4
17 Marcus Ericsson 2
18 Brendon Hartley 1
19 Romain Grosjean 0
20 Sergey Sirotkin 0

Constructors’ Championship Standings

Pos Constructor Points
1 Mercedes 206
2 Ferrari 189
3 Red Bull/Renault 134
4 Renault 56
5 McLaren/Renault 40
6 Force India/Mercedes 28
7 Toro Rosso/Honda 19
8 Haas/Ferrari 19
9 Sauber/Ferrari 12
10 Williams/Mercedes 4

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