Charles Leclerc WINS the Bahrain Grand Prix in a Ferrari 1-2 from Carlos Sainz… as Lewis Hamilton takes a shocking podium after BOTH Red Bull’s retired with mechanical points
- Charles Leclerc led a Ferrari 1-2 from Carlos Sainz to win the season-opening Bahrain Grand Prix
- The Ferrari driver had an epic battle with the Red Bull of Max Verstappen with each drivers passing one another
- Verstappen appeared sure to complete second solely to retire from the race late on to advertise Sainz
- Lewis Hamilton took benefit of Sergio Perez’s spin and retirement to take what was a shock podium
- Ferrari claimed their first victory for the reason that 20198 season whereas it was a disastrous day for Red Bull
Charles Leclerc received the opening Formula One race of the brand new period by taking victory on the Bahrain Grand Prix from pole position – and Lewis Hamilton took a shock podium place as Red Bull imploded.
The Monegasque led nearly each lap to present Ferrari their first victory since Singapore in 2019, surviving a possible scare when a late security automotive got here out to chop his lead of 5 seconds over Max Verstappen to nothing.
But Leclerc held on effective with eight laps remaining. Verstappen retired quickly after and his team-mate Sergio Perez spun to a cease with engine failure on the penultimate lap.
Charles Leclerc took his first victory for the reason that 2019 season after producing an excellent drive to win the Bahrain Grand Prix
Leclerc celebrates with his mechanics after a troublesome race in which he received out in a tough battle with Max Verstappen who finally retired
Max Verstappen reported issues after his late pit-stop and finally slowed and retired after complaining of steering points
Mercedes had been effectively off the tempo however took benefit of Red Bull’s issues to take third with Lewis Hamilton whereas George Russell got here residence in fourth
By default Hamilton completed third, two locations forward of the place he began, on an evening that, regardless of the late luck, underlined the laborious process Mercedes now face in combat their means again into rivalry throughout the 23-race season.
The Briton had been greater than half-a-minute from the highest earlier than the protection automotive got here out when Pierre Galsy’s AlphaTauri caught fireplace. Hamilton’s team-mate George Russell completed fourth.
Verstappen had thrice jousted with Leclerc for the lead – essentially the most entertaining early vignettes on a night that didn’t fairly reside as much as the hype and hope about shut racing.
Carlos Sainz completed second for Ferrari, although a great distance off his accomplice for many of the proceedings, and by no means as comfy in the automotive.
In phrases of pure tempo, Ferrari and Red Bull are means forward of the remaining. So a lot for levelling up by remodeling the rules!
The race sparked again to life in direction of the tip after Pierre Gasly pulled off with a mechanical difficulty to deliver out the protection automotive
Sergio Perez had been operating in third till, like Verstappen, he hit mechanical points and retired from the race
Hamilton made a effective begin taking Perez on the second nook, a left-hander, to maneuver into fourth earlier than the Mexican took him again on lap 10.
Mercedes made the seemingly unusual choice to place Hamilton on laborious tyres – most moved from softs to mediums. He was handed on his outlap, skating as if on slicks in the rain as he struggled to get warmth into them, by Guanyu Zhou, the Alfa Romeo new boy from China.
He retook the spot and proceeded, through one other cease, into fifth.
It was a surprising day for McLaren with each their vehicles lapped. Lando Norris completed 14th and Daniel Ricciardo thirteenth.
Sportsmail’s Kieran Lynch offered reside updates in the weblog for the Bahrain Grand Prix.