Easy win in Spain for Rosberg

BY CHARL BOSCH - MAY 11, 2015

Mercedes driver, Nico Rosberg, capped-off a dominating weekend by taking his maiden victory of the season during yesterday’s Spanish Grand Prix at Barcelona, ahead of teammate Lewis Hamilton and Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel.

In a crushing display, the German, who qualified on pole position, led away from start and never put a wheel wrong during the 66 laps to secure a 17-second win over Hamilton, and his first since the Brazilian Grand Prix last year.

“[It was] just a fantastic weekend. Everything worked out, Saturday and Sunday, and it came together today. To be first and second, especially after the two-week break when everyone brought upgrades, is great to see,” Sky F1 quoted Rosberg as saying.

By contrast, a visibly annoyed Hamilton, who qualified behind his teammate and had to overcome a slightly botched pitstop to jump Vettel as the four-times champion pitted on lap 40, told BBC Sport that the race was a case of “damage limitation” after struggling to match Rosberg’s pace.

"I got a bad start, had lots of wheelspin but it was a good race. Nico did a fantastic job and I was just grateful I could get back up to second. This was a difficult weekend for me and I'll take this.

Similarly, Malaysian Grand Prix winner Vettel described the race as his unhappiest of the season having crossed the line 45 seconds behind Rosberg due to fading tyre, but maintained that the championship was far from over.

“We are able to improve our car. We have some steps coming. We need to start turning things around very soon but we are pushing hard to beat them,” he told the BBC.

“Some tracks you are better than others. For some reason, we were not that competitive here even though we have improved the car. I am not happy with the result in terms of the gap to the front but we can be happy with the points”.

Behind Vettel, Williams driver Valtteri Bottas, fought off stern challenge from the second Ferrari of fellow Finn Kimi Raikkonen to finish fourth, despite the latter completing the race on the preferred orange labelled hard tyre instead of the white medium compound.

Bottas’ Williams teammate, Felipe Massa, finished a somewhat quiet race in sixth ahead of Red Bull’s Daniel Ricciardo while Lotus driver Romain Grosjean survived gearbox troubles and an altercation with teammate Pastor Maldonado, which the saw Venezuelan loosing part of his rear wing and eventually later retiring, to cross the line eighth.

Local rookie Carlos Sainz Jr continued his impressive showing by bringing his Toro Rosso home ninth ahead of the second Red Bull of Danill Kvyat despite the two coming to blows at the first corner on the final lap.

In another testing race for the reunited McLaren Honda outfit, former champion Jenson Button finished a distant 16th while teammate and local hero Fernando Alonso, ran as high as twelfth before brake failure during his second pitstop, saw the front jack man having to dive for cover as the McLaren arrived with locked front wheels on lap 28.

The next event sees the F1 circus heading to the streets of Monaco on May 24th

 

SPANISH GRAND PRIX RESULTS

Position Driver Team Gap
1. Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1:41:12.555
2. Lewis Hamilton Mercedes +17.511
3. Sebastian Vettel Ferrari +45.342
4. Valtteri Bottas Williams +59.217
5. Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari +1:00.002
6. Felipe Massa Williams +1:21.314
7. Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull + 1 Lap
8. Romain Grosjean Lotus + 1 Lap
9. Carlos Sainz Jr Toro Rosso + 1 Lap
10. Danill Kvyat Red Bull + 1 Lap
11. Max Vestappen Toro Rosso + 1 Lap
12. Felipe Nasr Sauber + 1 Lap
13. Sergio Perez Force India + 1 Lap
14. Marcus Ericsson Sauber + 1 Lap
15. Nico Hulkenberg Force India + 2 Laps
16. Jenson Button McLaren + 2 Laps
17. Will Stevens Manor + 3 Laps
18. Roberto Mehri Manor + 4 Laps
DNF Pastor Maldonado Lotus 44 laps, accident damage
DNF Fernando Alonso McLaren 28 laps, brakes

 

 

CHAMPIONSHIP STANDINGS

Position Driver Team Points
1. Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 111
2. Nico Rosberg Mercedes 91
3. Sebastian Vettel Ferrari 80
4. Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 52
5. Valtteri Bottas Williams 42
6. Felipe Massa Williams 39
7. Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull 25
8. Romain Grosjean Lotus 16
9. Felipe Nasr Sauber 14
10. Carlos Sainz Jr Toro Rosso 8
11. Max Verstappen Toro Rosso 6
12. Nico Hulkenberg Force India 6
13. Sergio Perez Force India 5
14. Marcus Ericsson Sauber 5
15. Danill Kvyat Red Bull 5
16. Fernando Alonso McLaren 0
17. Jenson Button McLaren 0
18. Roberto Mehri Manor 0
19. Will Stevens Manor 0
20. Pastor Maldonado Lotus 0
21. Kevin Magnussen McLaren 0

 

IMAGE sourced from www.grandprix247.com