Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso emerged unscathed to take victory yesterday in a drama-packed Chinese Grand Prix, with the Lotus’ Kimi Raikkonen and Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton holding on for second and third.
A charging Sebastian Vettel came fourth, just 0.2 seconds behind Hamilton, after adopting a different tyre strategy from most of his rivals, while his Red Bull team-mate Mark Webber failed to finish on a dreadful weekend for him. Jenson Button, of McLaren, was fifth, and Alonso’s teammate Felipe Massa sixth.
Going into the Bahrain Grand Prix next weekend, reigning three-time world champion Vettel leads the drivers’ standings on 52 points, followed by Raikkonen (49), Alonso (43), Hamilton (40) and Massa (30).
Two-time world champion Alonso said that he was delighted to get his season back on track after retiring early in Malaysia last month:
It feels good, it is a long time from my victory here eight years ago. It was not easy to understand this race sometimes, not an easy race. The risk is there when you overtake. This is a good reward for the team after the disappointment in Malaysia. Let’s hope this is now the start of the championship and we need to keep going like that.