Sebastian Vettel was untouched at Bahrain as he took his 28th victory of the season. The Lotus drivers performed well from their poor gird positions to fill up the top three, while Paul di Resta managed his race beautifully on a two stop strategy but eventually lost a chance to take his maiden podium finish. Sergio Perez showed first sparks of the season as he finished the race in 6th place after a race long battle with teammate Jenson Button. So, who was YOUR driver of the day? Give your opinion in the poll. Those who gave their opinion yesterday on Twitter, will see their tweets at the bottom of the page.
Sebastian Vettel dominated the proceeding on Sunday to take his second victory of the season and 28th of the career. At the start of the race, Vettel lost a place to Fernando Alonso on the outside of turn 1. But the German was able to regain that place in a matter of corners. He then set out a charge on pole sitter Nico Rosberg and blasted past the Mercedes driver on lap 3 to take lead of the race. From then he was in league of his own as he took the Chequered Flag by a margin on 9 seconds having set the fastest lap of the race two laps ago.
After a strong performance during the three practice session on a track which suits Lotus, Kimi Raikkonen failed to impress on Saturday as he could only qualify in 9th place(8th on the grid after Hamilton's penalty). However, things reversed in iceman's favour on Sunday as he finished in a strong 2nd place.
The Finn lost places and time to the two McLaren drivers during first few laps of the races, but once he was past the pair, he breezed through the field on a two stop strategy to take his 3rd podium of the season. Raikkonen is now Vettel's strongest rival in the championship, 10 points adrift of the triple world champion.
Grosjean had a relatively quite start to the season with the Frenchman scoring only 11 points during first three races of the season. However, that tally increased to 26 once he got a new chassis in the Bahrain Grand Prix.
Like his world champion teammate, Grosjean couldn't live upto the expectations in qualifying - he qualified in 11th place after a mistake on his flying lap prevented him from making the cut to the final round of qualifying. However, he looked strong in the race, moving up the field on a reverse strategy(hard/hard/medium/medium instead of medium/hard/hard/hard) as he took the final spot on the podium. This final spot on the podium was achieved when he passed two-stopper Di Resta on lap 52, depriving the Scotsman of his first podium.
Paul di Resta
Paul di Resta equaled his best race result but narrowly missed out on the podium as he beautifully managed his tyres on a two stop strategy to take 4th place in the Bahrain Grand Prix. The Scotsman looked strong all through the weekend and was also faster than his returnee teammate as he qualified in 7th place. That 7th place was turned into 5th on the grid after Hamilton and Webber's penalty.
At the start of the race, Di Resta overtook Felipe Massa and was chasing his teammate Fernando Alonso before the latter gifted him 3rd place when his DRS got struck in open position. He then passed Rosberg for second place in the race and briefly took the lead when Vettel pitted on lap 10. The 27 year old then stayed in 2nd place for most of the race before Raikkonen and Grosjean overtook him during the latter stages of the race. However, he could have finished on the podium had he not lost time by waiting for too long to make his 2nd and final stop. We'll explain in this detail tomorrow in our Strategy Analysis
Sergio Perez has had a tough start to his 2013 season, scoring only 2 points in three races in an uncompetitive McLaren. However, in Bahrain he showed that those three podiums last year with Sauber were not entirely down to his car's strong tyre management as he finished in a strong 6th place.
The Mexican moved from 12th to 8th by lap 3 but it was his intense battle with his teammate Jenson Button that drew the attention. He banged wheels with his teammate in a fight that continued most of the race with Perez eventually getting better out of his teammate forcing him to make another pit stop. After overtaking his teammate, he passed Alonso and Webber to take 6th place - his best finish for McLaren.
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