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2015 Canadian F1 GP: Hamilton Cruises To Victory In Montreal Photo:
 
 
Peter Anderson | Jun, 09 2015 | 3 Comments

Lewis Hamilton bounced back from the disaster of the Monaco Grand Prix to win in Montreal this weekend with a measure performance.

He had battled a difficult start to the weekend where he was having trouble getting the car to respond, but then didn't look back after a commanding pole position.

Daniel Ricciardo's weekend was mostly awful, despite making it into Q1, being beaten home by cars that started a long, long, way behind him while also suffering the ignominy of being out-qualified by Kvyat.

 

PRATICE AND QUALIFYING

Friday's changeable weather provided a little bit of drama, with Lewis Hamilton dumping his car in the barriers after aquaplaning off during a pointless fact-finding mission.

Saturday saw a nasty moment for Felipe Nasr who activated his DRS just as he wrenched the wheel to warm his tyres. He went head-on into the barrier, emerging unscathed but shaken.

The penalties flew thick and fast in Canada, with Button and Verstappen receiving technical sanctions. Sebastian Vettel's MGU-H packed up early in qualifying, leaving him unable to continue after just one run.

He would start at the back with Jenson Button who didn't even turn a wheel and Felipe Massa who just got it wrong.

Hamilton took pole after struggling in the practice session, with Rosberg beside him and Raikkonen and Bottas behind. Ricciardo would start ninth.

 

RACE

Race day was hazy, breezy and warm, promising to make tyre management easy, with the hard Pirelli tyres proving durable.

The grid lined up without incident and when the lights went out Hamilton shot away into the lead. Vettel made up three places off the back of the grid, the start of an attacking race for the Ferrari driver.

Bottas and Raikkonen squabbled through the first turns while Massa lost places in the mid-pack.

Vettel was, predictably, on a mission, using the hairpin to monster his prey at ever opportunity. He latched on to the back of the Massa-Ericsson battle, the Williams driver working very hard to get by the Swedish youngster.

Preferring to get out of the dirty air, Vettel pitted on lap eight. The idea backfired as the Ferrari sat motionless as the crew struggled to fit the left rear.

It was a double pity for Vettel as he missed out on Massa's mighty move on Marcus Ericsson. The Brazilian veteran shot down the outside into the left-hander of turn one, placing himself on the inside for the second half of the complex.

Both powered out of the corner, Ericsson fighting hard and fair, the pair suffering the lightest of touches, tyre-to-sidepod.

Meanwhile, the two Red Bull drivers held station in eighth and ninth until Force India's Perez and then Massa made their way by Ricciardo.

The other Red Bull of Kvyat sufferd the same fate, along with having to nurse an overheating rear brake caliper.

Alonso and Vettel had an unexpected battle, the impatient Ferrari driver trying extremely hard to get by the lame duck McLaren. Vettel had a scrappy lap, running wide into the dirt before trying to pass the McLaren at the final chicane.

Vettel clattered over the kerbs as Alonso defended his position, leaving Vettel having to try again next time around. There was nothing wrong with the McLaren's brakes, as once again Alonso held him off, but by turn one, Vettel was past.

Released from behind the McLaren, Vettel resumed his unstoppable forward progress, sailing by both Toro Rossos on consecutive laps and then Ericsson's Sauber.

Ricciardo pitted on lap 24, taking on the prime soft tyres and discarding super-softs. The idea was to try and stay ahead of Perez, but it was not to be, the Force India driver pitting next time around and coming out in front, despite a stuttering pit-lane exit.

Alonso's patience ran very thin on lap 25 when his team asked him to save fuel. A lengthy diatribe followed as he gave his engineer a quick summary of his philosophical position regarding his predicament. Short story was that he'd prefer to run out of fuel than stop racing.

Raikkonen pitted on lap 27 and was in and out so quickly he barely seemed to come to a halt, the Finn's weekend going rather better than his teammate's.

That was until he had a gigantic spin at the hairpin. He was straight on the radio to complain, saying it was a repeat of last year's drivability issues, a big torque spike throwing him into a 180-degree spin.

Raikkonen's loss was Valtteri Bottas' gain, the Williams driver getting out ahead of Raikkonen despite a slow stop.

Mercedes brought in Hamilton on lap 30, a flawless stop.

Vettel moved into seventh place after a surprised Maldonado found a Ferrari where he wanted to be, taking to the run-off area to avoid a clash.

Rosberg pitted on lap 31, just as his tyres were giving up the ghost, the German running wide at the hairpin before making pitlane.

It didn't seem to affect him, however, as when he rejoined, he was closer to Hamilton than he had been and then started drawing closer over a series of laps as he got the soft tyre working a bit better.

Felipe Massa was still out on his first set of tyres and it was beginning to show. The Brazilian had taken advantage of a good car and everyone else's pit stops to get as high as fifth place.

His rear tyres were beginnng to fall apart, however, but the problem was he had to move to the less durable super-soft. He pitted on lap 38, coming out ahead of Kvyat and Sergio Perez.

Vettel stopped on lap 36 for another set of soft compound tyres, coming out ahead of Kvyat in eighth place. Rosberg got the call from the pitwall to save his brakes for ten laps before attacking Hamilton.

Ricciardo had a heart-stopping moment on lap 39, nearly piling into the back of a Toro Rosso. He misjudged his braking into the final chicane and headed over the run-off.

Up front, Rosberg was within DRS zone. Hamilton was also under instructions from the pitwall to save fuel, the Mercedes pitwall home to a number of furrowed brows.

Raikkonen came into the pits on lap 41 for a set of super-softs, returning to the track in fourth, just ahead of the Lotus of Grosjean.

Vettel had yet another incident at the final chicane - after a number of laps behind Nico Hulkenberg, the Ferrari driver threw it down the outside. The Force India driver went way too far on to the kerb, the Ferrari hopping the other kerb to avoid touching.

Alonso's engine started to falter on lap 46 and a lap later he was being wheeled backwards into his garage, his third retirement in three races.

Grosjean appeared unannounced in the pits on lap 50 after an unfortunate moment while lapping Marussia's Will Stevens. It was a simple move to drive around the Briton, but he cut across too early and punctured his left rear.

The two limped into the pits, the Frenchman crying, "He hit me! He hit me." He later repented and took all the blame, which included a five second time penalty.

Ricciardo's largely miserable weekend reached its nadir when on lap 55 Carlos Sainz was able to drive past the Red Bull.

Vettel's stellar drive continued as he shot past fifth-placed Maldonado on the long straight after the hairpin, finding himself behind Kimi Raikkonen after failing to get out of Q1.

Hard-working Jenson Button had spent the race saving fuel, hoping to "have some fun" in the closing laps on super-soft tyres.

His chance to enjoy himself was curtailed as he was asked to retire the car on lap 58. McLaren's weekend was even more dire than predicted.

Maldonado and Massa were locked in battle for sith and seventh respectively, with the Williams eventually prevailing with minimum fuss. Perhaps the Venezuelan had an attack of maturity as he found himself in a position to score points.

The other Lotus was harassing the Red Bull of Kvyat, with Grosjean needing not only to pass but to eke out a five second gap to keep the place.

Hamilton took the flag in near-record time, despite having to lift-and-coast on the final laps.

The world champion was pleased to take the win after the debacle in Monaco and once again to resume pulling ahead of Rosberg in the championship race.

Valtteri Bottas finished third for Williams while Daniel Ricciardo came home thirteenth, a far cry from last year's win.

"That was one of those races where I was going round and round, banging my head against a wall. I made a few jokes yesterday thinking today would be better, and I didn't think in my wildest dreams today would end up how it did," Ricciardo said.

"It was like two years ago to be honest, it was really strange. I had my worst race here in 2013 when I was 15th.

Formula 1 returns in two weeks for the Austrian Grand Prix.

 

2015 Canadian F1 GP Results

  1. Lewis Hamilton - Mercedes - 1h31m53.145s
  2. Nico Rosberg - Mercedes +2.285s
  3. Valtteri Bottas - Williams/Mercedes +40.666s
  4. Kimi Raikkonen - Ferrari +45.625s
  5. Sebastian Vettel - Ferrari +49.903s
  6. Felipe Massa - Williams/Mercedes +56.381s
  7. Pastor Maldonado - Lotus/Mercedes +1m06.664s
  8. Nico Hulkenberg - Force India/Mercedes +1 Lap
  9. Daniil Kvyat - Red Bull/Renault +1 Lap
  10. Romain Grosjean - Lotus/Mercedes +1 Lap
  11. Sergio Perez - Force India/Mercedes +1 Lap
  12. Carlos Sainz - Toro Rosso/Renault +1 Lap
  13. Daniel Ricciardo - Red Bull/Renault +1 Lap
  14. Marcus Ericsson - Sauber/Ferrari +1 Lap
  15. Max Verstappen - Toro Rosso/Renault +1 Lap
  16. Felipe Nasr - Sauber/Ferrari +2 Laps
  17. Will Stevens - Marussia/Ferrari +4 Laps

Retirements

Roberto Merhi - Marussia/Ferrari
Jenson Button - McLaren/Honda
Fernando Alonso - McLaren/Honda

 
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