Vettel disappoints, Ricciardo wins Formula One Championship race
The 2018 FIA Formula One World Championship took place in China the weekend of April 14 at the Shanghai International Circuit.
Qualifying looked very promising for the Scuderia Ferrari team, as both of its cars locked out the front row of the grid.
The Mercedes-AMG Petronas and Red Bull Racing team cars had locked out the two rows behind the Ferrari cars.
The race got off to a normal start, but it was not until lap 27 that things would go crazy. After pitting earlier than Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel, Mercedes’ Valtteri Bottas came back onto the track leading the race.
Bottas, Vettel and Ferrari’s Kimi Räikkönen all engaged in a three-car battle for the lead until both Ferrari cars crashed into each other.
This incident brought out the safety car, which is used to reduce a race’s speed in the event of a hazardous situation.
Once the safety car was deployed, the two Ferrari cars and Bottas could not pit because they had already passed the pit lane entrance. Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton could not pit because he did not have a set of fresher tires.
The Red Bull team capitalized on this, pitting both of their drivers, Daniel Ricciardo and Max Verstappen, at the same time onto fresher tires.
Ricciardo took great advantage of the pit by performing amazing overtakes on the cars in front of him and taking the lead in the Grand Prix.
Verstappen had an eventful race as well after he made the pit stop.
Shortly after the race restarted, Verstappen tried to pass Hamilton around the outside and ran out of room.
This forced him to cut the corner and end up in the dirt before he came back onto the track, causing him to lose a position to his teammate Ricciardo.
Afterward, Verstappen passed by Hamilton and then tried to get past Vettel.
Verstappen went for an audacious move on the inside of Vettel and actually locked up his rear tires, crashing straight into Vettel.
Verstappen was awarded a 10-second penalty that would be added to his time after the race, costing him one extra position.
Vettel never recovered after destroying his rear tires while trying to get back up to speed.
Nico Hülkenberg drove past him going into the first turn while Vettel was struggling to even stay on the track.
The McLaren team’s Fernando Alonso later passed Vettel going into turn one and ended up running Vettel off the track.
Vettel and Ferrari were definitely not happy about how this race turned out after leading it for most of the Grand Prix.
Ricciardo went on to win the race, Bottas came second and Räikkönen got the last spot on the podium.
Hamilton finished in fourth place after having an awful weekend and Verstappen finished fifth despite ending in front of Hamilton on track.
The 10-second time penalty caused the young driver to be demoted by one position. Vettel would barely bring the car home in eighth place after an extremely disappointing race.
He still leads the championship by nine points over Hamilton heading into the Azerbaijan Grand Prix.