Vettel Leads Historical 1-2 for Red Bull in China

Sebastian Vettel did it again! The Red Bull Racing driver clinched his second F1 win from pole in career on Sunday, dominating the Chinese Grand Prix alongside teammate Mark Webber. The RBR duo didn’t leave anybody a chance during the rainy race at Shanghai, as they crossed the finish line more than half-of-minute ahead of 3rd placed Jenson Button.

The race went off under safety car because of the intense rain that started pouring down the Shanghai circuit minutes before the scheduled start. That affected 2nd placed Fernando Alonso’s strategy for the race, as the Spaniard pitted only one lap before the safety car went in – due to the little fuel in his Renault R29 – and practically threw away his initial grid advantage.

Under the circumstances, both Vettel and Webber went on to comfortably lead the pack, with the former putting important seconds between him and his teammate in the early laps. Brawn GP’s Jenson Button overtook teammate Rubens Barrichello only kilometers after the action was given the go-ahead and kept that position until the finish line.

In the back, Lewis Hamilton started to recover track position lap after lap, but his efforts to challenge for a China podium soon turned to dust after an unfortunate spin. Actually, this is how the entire afternoon unfolded for the reigning world champion, as his driving errors prevented him from scoring a great result at Shanghai. While always in a great position – considering his qualifying pace on Saturday – Hamilton would end up spinning around the Chinese track.

During the course of the afternoon, the McLaren driver overtook Ferrari rival Kimi Raikkonen no less than 3 times – due to the constant errors that moved Hamilton further back in the race – as the F60 again proved an easy nut to crack on Sunday. Renault’s Alonso also managed to recover well by mid-race, as he climbed all the way into 8th at a certain point.

However, his efforts to recover ground to the front-runners hit the brick wall with rookie Sebastien Buemi’s name written all over it. The 2-time world champion found it impossible to overtake the Toro Rosso driver, losing precious minutes before making his second pit stop of the day.

While rejoining the pack behind Lewis Hamilton, the Renault driver – known as a rain specialist – lost control of his car and caused his first spin of the day, which practically ruined every chance of making the Top 8.

With the two RBR Renaults doing an admirable job in the front, the only action worth mentioning happened in the back. McLaren’s Heikki Kovalainen took advantage of another spin from teammate Hamilton and climbed all the way into 5th place, while Toyota's Timo Glock – thanks to a great pit strategy – managed to secure a Top 8 drive in 7th place.

After the second pit stop, it was pretty obvious only a driving error would stop the two RBR drivers to record their team’s maiden 1-2 in F1. That never happened, of course, with the duo being joined by championship leader Button on the overall podium.

Ferrari had another disastrous day on Sunday, with Raikkonen finishing on a disappointing 10th place and Massa saying good-bye to the Chinese action after his engine broke down mid-way through the race.

Following the overall podium was Barrichello, who settled for 4th place, ahead of McLaren duo Heikki Kovalainen and Lewis Hamilton. Glock and Buemi completed the Top 8.
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