Nico Rosberg cruised to a dominant win at the Chinese Grand Prix on Sunday, extending his advantage to 36 points in the drivers’ standings.
At the start of the race, Red Bull’s Daniel Ricciardo shot passed Rosberg to take the lead, only to suffer a costly puncture.
Behind, Daniil Kvyat carried excessive speed in the first sequence of corners, hitting Kimi Raikkonen, who subsequently made contact with Vettel. While Kvyat and Vettel could carry on, Raikkonen had to pit immediately for a new nose.
Vettel himself suffered damage to his car and fell down the pack, but recovered enough to finish in second place, over 35 seconds behind Rosberg who comfortably led the pack after retaking the lead from Ricciardo.
Kvyat joined the German on the podium, securing his first rostrum result since last year’s Hungarian Grand Prix.
Meanwhile, Ricciardo and Raikkonen were able to recover enough to finish in fourth and fifth positions respectively, ahead of Williams’ Felipe Massa.
Lewis Hamilton, however, endured a difficult day in China, losing his front wing on the opening lap and damaging his car - something that cost him pace towards the end of the race as he limped home in seventh place.
Further back, Max Verstappen and Carlos Sainz secured a double points finish for Toro Rosso, with Valtteri Bottas rounding off the top 10.
Sergio Perez, who was running in the points for majority of the race, fell outside of the top 10 as his medium tyres wore off towards the end, allowing the Toro Rossos to get past.
Likewise, the strategies of McLaren drivers Jenson Button and Fernando Alonso failed to pay dividends as they finished in 12th and 13th place respectively.
All 22 drivers remarkably made it to the finish, with Renault’s Jolyon Palmer propping up the timesheets.
by Rachit Thukral