Nico Rosberg has taken his fifth successive and his second victory of the season at the Bahrain Grand Prix from Ferrari’s Kimi Raikkonen and team-mate Lewis Hamilton was third. Rosberg led much of the race from the start.
It was a messy race from the world champion after he had contact with the Williams of Valtteri Bottas at the start of the race. The Fin was given a penalty for the collision. Raikkonen also made a bad start but he proved that the team can put on the pressure to Mercedes.
Rosberg said to Channel4’s David Coulthard on the podium “For sure, it’s been an awesome weekend. The key was the start. I had a great getaway and from there I was just trying to control the race.”
Speaking about his contact with Bottas Hamilton said “I lost a lot of performance from the car, whoever was on the inside was in my blindspot. It was just a racing incident.”
It was a bad day for Sebastian Vettel in the Ferrari and the Renault of Jolyon Palmer who both did not start after technical problems on the formation lap. Vettel retired after suffering an engine failure half-way round the formation lap.
The Germans retirement may hamper his title hopes if he runs into more problems later this season as he now will have four power units to complete the rest of the season. But the next few races Ferrari need to halt the charge or Mercedes could build the momentum for the world title.
Red Bull’s Daniel Ricciardo put in a good performance to be ahead of the Haas of Romain Grosjean. The American team took a aggressive strategy using the super soft tyres for much of the race. Daniil Kyvat finished seventh ahead of the Williams of Bottas.
Haas who made their debut in Melbourne are now fifth in the constructors championship and has had the best start for a new team since Brawn GP in 2009 when they took two back-to-back wins on the way to the title.
McLaren Stoffel Vandoorne who was standing in for Fernando Alonso finished tenth on his debut as team-mate Jenson Button retired from the race. The Belgian told Sky Sports “For my F1 debut I can be very happy with that
“Since the beginning of the weekend I’ve felt comfortable. I just tried not to make mistakes. To come away with one point is a bonus.” His more experienced team-mate Jenson Button retired after his engine cut out early in the race.