F1: Rosberg Dominates The Japanese GP As Bad Start Pushes Hamilton To 3rd
By Sameer Contractor
1 mins read
Published on October 9, 2016
- A bad start at the grid thwarted Hamilton behind teammate Nico Rosberg
- Red Bull racer Max Verstappen took the second spot
- Hamilton's disappointing start pushed him down to 8th at the startline
It was the race of redemption for Lewis Hamilton at the Japanese Grand Prix as the British driver was looking to reclaim his lead in the driver championship standings. However, a bad start at the grid thwarted Hamilton behind teammate Nico Rosberg, who eventually ended up winning the race. While Rosberg dominated the race with a lead of 4.9 seconds, Red Bull racer Max Verstappen was at his defensive best in the closing stages of the race as Hamilton pushed to take on the second spot.
The race started with Nico Rosberg starting at pole, while Hamilton's disappointing start pushed him down to 8th at the startline. Meanwhile, Rosberg had gained a lead of 1.2 seconds ahead of Verstappen, Force India's Sergio Perez, Daniel Ricciardo, Sebastian Vettel, Nico Hulkenberg and Kim Raikkonen. Vettel, however, moved ahead of Ricciardo into 130R and pushed ahead of Perez as well.
As the race moved past Lap 10, Rosberg's lead increased to 7.3 seconds, while Ricciardo and Verstappen pitted for hard tyres as the latter started to lose pace prior to that. Meanwhile, Hamilton was sprinting his way back to the top for most of the race. As Vettel held on to the third place, Hamilton was a gap of 4 seconds and climbing fast behind the Ferrari driver. Lewis pitted on Lap 34 changing to soft tyres, which forced Ferrari to ask Vettel to pit as well for softs and the latter managed to set the fastest lap time on Lap 37.
Nevertheless, Hamilton was at his aggressive best and passed Vettel on the straights, moving into a fight with Verstappen in the Battle for Second. The Briton's many attempts to take down Verstappen served futile but made for an extremely exciting duel.
At the end of the race, Vettel had to settle for a distant fourth behind Hamilton, ahead of teammate Kimi Raikkonen. After a brilliant pole at the Malaysian GP last week, Daniel Ricciardo finished sixth in the race, ahead of Perez and Hulkenberg. Williams F1 drivers Massa and Bottas finished 9th and 10th respectively.
Moving down, Haas's Romain Grosjean finished 11th, ahead of Renault's Jolyon Palmer, while Daniil Kvyat of Torro Rosso bagged the 13th place, ahead of Renault's Kevin Magnussen and Sauber's Marcus Ericsson.
Rosberg's win at the Japanese GP has cemented Mercedes-Benz its win in the constructors' championship, with Red Bull coming in second. As far as driver standings at concerned, the difference between Nico and Lewis has increased further, pretty much sealing Nico's lead. With last four races of the season to go, Hamilton needs to push his best foot forward for the upcoming weekends.
Last Updated on October 9, 2016
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