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Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel Wins Canadian Grand Prix, Claims Lead in Formula One Standings

By Fitzgerald Cecilio
on Jun 12, 2018 08:48 AM EDT
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Sebastian Vettel of Ferrari captured the chequered flag at the Canadian Grand Prix to grab a one-point lead over Lewis Hamilton of Mercedes in the race for the championship. Starting from the pole position, Vettel led the race from the start en route to a seven-second triumph over Valtteri Bottas of Mercedes and his 50th Formula 1 career victory.

The win was also the first for Ferrari in Canada since Michael Schumacher did it in 2004. The race was declared at 68 laps after the chequered flag was waved too early by model Winnie Harlow.

Vettel finished the race with a time of 1 hour, 28 minutes and 31.3 seconds, earning 25 points for his effort. Bottas came in second, 7.37 seconds behind the winner, while Max Verstappen and Daniel Ricciardo of Red Bull Racing came in third and fourth, respectively. Hamilton and Kimi Raikkonen placed fifth and sixth, 21.5 seconds and 27 seconds behind Vettel, respectively.

With the win, Vettel (121 points) took a one-point lead over Hamilton (120) in the driver's championship. Bottas was third with 86 points and Ricciardo fourth with 84. Raikkonen was fifth with 68 points while Max Verstappen of Red Bull came in fifth with 50 points. Also in the top 10 were Fernando Alonso of McLaren (32), Nico Hulkenberg of Renault (32), Carlos Sainz of Renault (24) and Kevin Magnussen of Den Haas Ferrari (19).

Vettel Describes Canadian GP Win

Despite his convincing win, Vettel said the victory was not easy. "No, it's never easy," says Vettel, adding that he suffered a sequence of malfunction midway through the race where he had to change a lot of things on the steering wheel.

Vettel dedicated the win to the team and to Gilles Villeneuve, who won the Canadian GP 40 years ago. Villeneuve drove for Ferrari from 1977 to 1982 before he lost his life during qualifying for the 1982 Belgian Grand Prix.

The Canadian Grand Prix track was named Circuit Gilles Villeneuve in his honor. Before the race, Gilles' son, Jacques, drove his Ferrari 312T3 car around the Montreal circuit. "I'm just extremely proud to become part of that story, step by step, and hopefully a bit more in the future," Vettel said.

Hamilton Suffered Engine Woes

Despite his fifth-place finish in Canada, Hamilton was elated just to reach the end of the Canadian Grand Prix. Hamilton tells the media that he struggled with engine issues throughout the race.

"I just thought it was going to fail, and every single lap," said Hamilton, adding that he was just waiting for the power to drop away. Mercedes had a last-minute quality concern over its engine upgrade so it decided not to use it in Canada. Instead, the team will use it for the next race in France.

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