Hamilton beats Rosberg in Bahrain thriller

By on Sunday, April 6, 2014
Mercedes AMG Petronas

Mercedes AMG Petronas

Lewis Hamilton claimed victory over team-mate Nico Rosberg in a scintillating Bahrain Grand Prix, in which the Mercedes drivers swapped positions several times.

Hamilton jumped Rosberg at the start and while the German tried to reclaim the lead into turn four it was the Brit who prevailed.

Felipe Massa rocketed away at the start and leapt up to third, ahead of Pérez and Bottas.

Jean-Éric Vergne was a first lap casualty after making contact with one of the Lotus drivers and having to pit for repairs. Vergne retired a few laps later.

Hamilton and Rosberg stormed away from Massa at over a second a lap while behind them, Button and Nico Hülkenberg dispensed with Valtteri Bottas within the space of a couple of corners. Bottas soon ducked into the pits while Pérez got ahead of Felipe Massa in the battle for third a few laps later.

Adrian Sutil had another troublesome race after twice making contact with Jules Bianchi within the space of a single lap. The duo collided on the exit of turn four while Bianchi made a move up the inside of the first corner, which left the German with a hobbled car. Bianchi had to pit for repairs while Sutil retired a few laps later.

Rosberg sat behind his team-mate for the first stint of the race but for two laps the duo squabbled for position until Hamilton prevailed before pitting for the first time. Behind them, the Force India drivers quickly dispensed with Alonso and ran line astern for several laps.

Hülkenberg and Pérez rapidly caught up with the Williams of Bottas and Massa as the early-to-stop Finn began to struggle. Bottas pitted and while Hülkenberg tried to pass Massa, Pérez seized the advantage and slipped up the inside of his Force India team-mate. The Mexican took a few laps but eventually got through on Massa, while Hülkenberg followed suit a few corners later.

Marcus Ericsson retired two-thirds of the way through the race but the safety car was deployed for a frightening collision between Pastor Maldonado and Esteban Gutiérrez. Maldonado exited the pit lane and T-boned the Sauber driver at the first corner, tipping Gutiérrez into a roll. The Mexican was uninjured but the race was neutralised to clear the wreckage. Kevin Magnussen also parked trackside during the caution period with smoke trailing from his McLaren. Maldonado was later given a 10 second stop/go penalty for the accident.

Under the safety car the two Mercedes drivers pitted, Rosberg for options and Hamilton for primes. At the restart the Mercedes duo bolted while Pérez held off the advances of Hülkenberg while the Red Bull pair closed in on the Force India drivers. But there was a battle between the duo as Ricciardo passed his more experienced team-mate.

Up front Rosberg and Hamilton battled for position as the race reached its conclusion, with the German diving up the inside of the first corner before Hamilton maintained it on the exit of turn four. Rosberg tried again a lap later but ran too deep and had to settle for second best. Further back, Ricciardo got through on Hülkenberg for fourth place.

Rosberg slipped ever so slightly behind Hamilton as the Brit secured his second victory within a week. Pérez hung on for third to claim his first podium since 2012 while Ricciardo secured fourth for Red Bull, ahead of Hülkenberg.

Vettel finished in sixth for Red Bull, while Massa led home Williams team-mate Bottas

Ferrari endured a difficult day as the car was not competitive, leaving Fernando Alonso and Kimi Räikkönen to round out the top 10.

144Lewis HamiltonMercedes57Winner225
26Nico RosbergMercedes57+1.0 secs118
311Sergio PerezForce India-Mercedes57+24.0 secs415
43Daniel RicciardoRed Bull Racing-Renault57+24.4 secs1312
527Nico HulkenbergForce India-Mercedes57+28.6 secs1110
61Sebastian VettelRed Bull Racing-Renault57+29.8 secs108
719Felipe MassaWilliams-Mercedes57+31.2 secs76
877Valtteri BottasWilliams-Mercedes57+31.8 secs34
914Fernando AlonsoFerrari57+32.5 secs92
107Kimi RäikkönenFerrari57+33.4 secs51
1126Daniil KvyatSTR-Renault57+41.3 secs12
128Romain GrosjeanLotus-Renault57+43.1 secs16
134Max ChiltonMarussia-Ferrari57+59.9 secs21
1413Pastor MaldonadoLotus-Renault57+62.8 secs17
1510Kamui KobayashiCaterham-Renault57+87.9 secs18
1617Jules BianchiMarussia-Ferrari56+1 Lap19
1722Jenson ButtonMcLaren-Mercedes55+2 Laps6
Ret20Kevin MagnussenMcLaren-Mercedes40+17 Laps8
Ret21Esteban GutierrezSauber-Ferrari39Accident15
Ret9Marcus EricssonCaterham-Renault33+24 Laps20
Ret25Jean-Eric VergneSTR-Renault18+39 Laps14
Ret99Adrian SutilSauber-Ferrari17+40 Laps22

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