F1: US Grand Prix, a Double Podium for Ferrari
- Hamilton 1st, Vettel 2nd, Kimi to 3rd
Ferrari team drivers, Sebastian Vettel and Kimi Raikkonen, finished 2nd and 3d at the Circuit of the Americas aka COTA, at the end of an super action packed race where we saw lots of dramatic moments.
The last of these actually came immediately after the race, once the stewards deemed that Red Bull Racing’s Max Verstappen had left the track with all 4 wheels in passing Mr. Raikkonen for 3rd at Turn 17.
It meant Mr. Raikkonen was reinstated to 3rd and too the last step on the podium.
With 3 races to go, the drivers’ title is still undecided mathematically, with Mr. Vettel on 265 points and Mr. Raikkonen on 163.
Conditions were warm and Sunny in Austin, Texas after the morning storm.
At the start Mr. Vettel got away well to take the lead on the run up the hill. Using DRS, MerccedesAMG’s Lewis Hamilton closed in on Mr. Vettel, who had to give best under braking at the end of the longest straight.
Mr. Vettel was struggling with his tires and pitted on lap 17 to fit the Softs, the hardest tire available this weekend. He rejoined 5th and was immediately very quick.
On lap 19, Mr. Hamilton pitted and as he came out of pit lane, he had Mr. Vettel in close proximity.
Mr. Verstappen drove his way up nicely from the back (17) of the grid and when he opted for a 2nd tire stop, with that move Ferrari changed its strategy, bringing Mr. Vettel in to fit the Supersofts. The # 5 Ferrari rejoined in front of Mr. Verstappen, but it was Mr. Raikkonen who was putting on the show, dispatching Mr. Bottas at turn 12 to take 2nd place.
Mr. Vettel upped his pace, and the gap to Mr. Bottas closed. On lap 48, Mr. Vettel set the fastest race lap, which brought him into the DRS zone.
Then came a brilliant move at the start of lap 51, as Mr. Vettel attacked Mr. Bottas’ MercedesAMG on the climb up to the 1st corner, going round the outside, and catching him out as they came up on the back marker Mr. Vandoorne.
Next up he passed Mr. Raikkonenwho was on much older tires. Then just at the end, Kimi lost 3rd place to Mr. Verstappen, but that disappointment was not to last long, as the steward penalized Max 5 secs for going off of the track to gain the advantage.
|4||Red Bull Racing TAG Heuer||56||+16.768s|
|6||Force India Mercedes||56||+90.980s|
|8||Force India Mercedes||55||+1 lap|
|9||Williams Mercedes||55||+1 lap|
|10||Toro Rosso||55||+1 lap|
|11||Williams Mercedes||55||+1 lap|
|12||McLaren Honda||55||+1 lap|
|13||Toro Rosso||55||+1 lap|
|14||Haas Ferrari||55||+1 lap|
|15||Sauber Ferrari||55||+1 lap|
|16||Haas Ferrari||55||+1 lap|
|NC||Red Bull Racing TAG Heuer||14||DNF|
Next weekend, Mexico City.
Have a terrific week.
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