Ferrari driver Sebastian Vettel is holding on to his current year lead with another victory at Bahrain. Ferrari on their part are showing that their current engine is able to match the Mercedes powerplant, with both the cars starting on row one. Rivals Valtteri Bottas and Lewis Hamilton have kept the battle alive by taking a double podium second and third.

The race began with Bottas managing to pull off a great start, getting ahead of Raikkonen by the first corner, Hamilton on his part navigating the chaos of the cars and coming out a few positions up from his penalty spot on the fifth row.

The first few laps saw the two Red Bulls of Daniel Ricciardo and Max Verstappen retiring, with Ricciardo’s system shutting off while Verstappen went through a collision with Hamilton on a misjudged corner, a blown rear tyre and having to limp back into the pits for a change, only to pull off a lap later.

By the time Vettel pulled in for his tyre change to soft tyres, Bottas took the lead, being chased down by Raikkonen, with Hamilton trying to stay out to get into a better spot. When Bottas came in and took on medium tyres, it became obvious that Mercedes were looking at a single stop strategy. Hamilton followed suit, putting pressure on the Scuderia. Raikkonen’s pit stop became a tragedy, with his rear tyre mechanic being dragged as he sprinted off – on a mistimed green signal. Raikkonen stopped his car immediately and retired from the race.

Vettel was now sitting out in front on soft tyres, which he stayed on for 39 laps, managing to stave off the challenge from Bottas, while Hamilton didn’t have enough time to catch up. In the process Hamilton managed to keep the Toro Rosso of Pierre Gasly off the podium. The Honda powered car managed to surprise many with its performance in this race.

Post race Vettel said, “Obviously, this is a great way to start the season and it wasn’t expected. Obviously Australia was a different race and if you compare these two races, here we had the pace and won on our own. So, I think it’s been much better, but it was a very tough race. It took a while for the adrenaline to go, but for the next week we are not sure where we are going to be. It is difficult to predict with everything changing so much. In China it will be a different track and a different challenge, but we have to improve our car and work on it. We still need to improve the balance. However, if we should have a similar feeling like here, then I think we should be in a good shape.”

On his part Bottas lamented, “It was so close in the end, it’s a shame I couldn’t win. When it’ s so close, you start to think about every lap and every corner after the race, trying to figure out if there is something you could have done better. But I feel like I did a good race, I didn’t make any mistakes and I gave it everything I had. I didn’t try the Medium tyres before the race, but it went well and we managed to do a really long stint. Only in the last three laps I started to struggle with the tyres and once I got close to Sebastian everything got more difficult.”

2018 Formula 1 Drivers

Car NoNameTeam2018 season2017 season
5Sebastian VettelFerrari54317
44Lewis HamiltonMercedes45363
77Valtteri BottasMercedes40305
3Daniel RicciardoRed Bull Racing37200
7Kimi RäikkönenFerrari30205
14Fernando AlonsoMcLaren2217
27Nico HulkenbergRenault2243
33Max VerstappenRed Bull Racing18168
10Pierre GaslyToro Rosso120
20Kevin MagnussenHaas1119
2Stoffel VandoorneMcLaren613
55Carlos SainzRenault354
9Marcus EricssonSauber20
31Esteban OconForce India187
11Sergio PerezForce India0100
16Charles LeclercSauber0 
8Romain GrosjeanHaas028
18Lance StrollWilliams040
28Brendan HartleyToro Rosso00
35Sergey SirotkinWilliams0 

2018 Formula 1 Teams

Team2018 season2017 season
Mercedes85668
Ferrari84522
Red Bull Racing55368
McLaren Renault2830
Renault2557
Toro Rosso Honda1253
Haas Ferrari1147
Sauber Ferrari25
Force India Mercedes1187
Williams Mercedes083
2018 Formula 1 Teams

2018 Formula 1 Races

LocationDateFirstSecondThird
Australia25/03/2018Sebastian VettelLewis HamiltonKimi Raikkonen
Bahrain04/04/2018Sebastian VettelValtteri BottasLewis Hamilton
China15/04/2018Daniel RicciardoValtteri BottasKimi Raikkonen
Azerbaijan29/04/2018   
Spain13/05/2018   
Monaco27/05/2018   
Canada10/06/2018   
France24/06/2018   
Austria01/07/2018   
Britain08/07/2018   
Germany22/07/2018   
Hungary29/07/2018   
Belgium26/08/2018   
Italy02/09/2018   
Singapore16/09/2018   
Russia20/09/2018   
Japan07/10/2018   
United States21/10/2018   
Mexico28/10/2018   
Brazil11/11/2018   
Abu Dhabi25/11/2018   

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