The French GP held at the Paul Ricardo circuit in the south of France saw Lewis Hamilton take a straight victory on the back of his pole position, while Sebastian Vettel ‘s hard charge saw him collide with Valtteri Bottas at the first corner, forcing both drivers to pit and fight back from the rear of the pack.
The first corner melee actually extended beyond that incident as the two Frenchmen Esteban Ocon and Pierre Gasly found themselves knocked out of the race.
The Ferrari team used Vettel ‘s pit stop to change the nose cone and his tyres to the yellow walled soft, indicating that they were likely to run him till the end of the race. Vettel went on to fight his way up through the field, followed a couple of places behind by Bottas. He eventually found himself behind Raikkonen up in fourth behind the lead car of Hamilton and the two Red Bulls of Verstappen and Ricciardo. A new round of pit stops saw Ricciardo lose position to Raikkonen with Vettel enjoying a brief sojourn in second till he too was brought in as he was nursing the soft tyres.
Lance Stroll lost his front left tyre as it shredded and saw him in the blue and red gravel trap lining the Paul Ricardo circuit, triggering the virtual safety car towards the end of the race and leading to a potential finish under the VSC. That was opened up, allowing for some action, including Sainz dropping back with a power loss allowing Magnussen ‘ Haas and Bottas to move ahead.
The race ended with Hamilton taking a much deserved win followed by Verstappen and Raikkonen. Ricciardo hung on for fourth ahead of Vettel and they were followed by Magnussen and Bottas.
After the race Hamilton said, “When you’re constructive and criticise yourself, approach a challenge with new methods and a new-found determination, it’s a great feeling to then get the result. But it’s also disappointing for the team as we had the opportunity to take a 1-2, which is always incredible as you achieve your ultimate goal as a team. I was very comfortable with the balance this afternoon. Max had decent pace, but I could maintain the gap at around five seconds. The fresh engine put us back in line with everyone else who took a new PU in Canada and everybody in the team should be feeling happy today for the good work they have done. But there’s a long way to go and we’ll keep approaching the rest of the season like we approached today.”
2018 Formula 1 Drivers
|Car No||Name||Team||2018 season||2017 season|
|33||Max Verstappen||Red Bull Racing||173||168|
|3||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull Racing||146||200|
|11||Sergio Perez||Force India||53||100|
|31||Esteban Ocon||Force India||49||87|
|10||Pierre Gasly||Toro Rosso||28||0|
|28||Brendan Hartley||Toro Rosso||2||0|
2018 Formula 1 Teams
|Team||2018 season||2017 season|
|Red Bull Racing||319||368|
|Force India Mercedes||43||187|
|Toro Rosso Honda||30||53|
2018 Formula 1 Races
|Japan||07/10/2018||Lewis Hamilton||Valtteri Bottas||Max Verstappen|
|Russia||20/09/2018||Lewis Hamilton||Valtteri Bottas||Sebastian Vettel|
|Singapore||16/09/2018||Lewis Hamilton||Max Verstappen||Sebastian Vettel|
|Italy||02/09/2018||Lewis Hamilton||Kimi Raikkonen||Valtteri Bottas|
|Belgium||26/08/2018||Sebastian Vettel||Lewis Hamilton||Max Verstappen|
|Hungary||29/07/2018||Lewis Hamilton||Sebastian Vettel||Kimi Raikkonen|
|Germany||22/07/2018||Lewis Hamilton||Valtteri Bottas||Kimi Raikkonen|
|Britain||08/07/2018||Sebastian Vettel||Lewis Hamilton||Kimi Raikkonen|
|Austria||01/07/2018||Max Verstappen||Kimi Raikkonen||Sebastian Vettel|
|France||24/06/2018||Lewis Hamilton||Max Verstappen||Kimi Raikkonen|
|Canada||10/06/2018||Sebastian Vettel||Valtteri Bottas||Max Verstappen|
|Monaco||27/05/2018||Daniel Ricciardo||Sebastian Vettel||Lewis Hamilton|
|Spain||13/05/2018||Lewis Hamilton||Valtteri Bottas||Max Verstappen|
|Azerbaijan||29/04/2018||Lewis Hamilton||Kimi Raikkonen||Sergio Perez|
|China||15/04/2018||Daniel Ricciardo||Valtteri Bottas||Kimi Raikkonen|
|Bahrain||04/04/2018||Sebastian Vettel||Valtteri Bottas||Lewis Hamilton|
|Australia||25/03/2018||Sebastian Vettel||Lewis Hamilton||Kimi Raikkonen|