Rosberg wins Formula 1 season opener in Melbourne
Nico Rosberg is the winner of Formula 1 Australian Grand Prix at Melbourne Grand Prix Circuit. Mercedes driver scored his 16th career victory after beating team-mate and reigning champion Lewis Hamilton while Sebastian Vettel in Ferrari was third.
Mercedes is still far ahead
The race was marked by a huge crash between Fernando Alonso and Esteban Gutierrez while another interesting thing is that it looks like Ferrari slightly reduced a gap regard to Mercedes and battle for points between other teams could be more competitive than it was last year.
The start of the race didn’t go smoothly as Daniil Kvyat stopped in the middle of the grid, so another formation lap was formed. The Russian driver in Red Bull then was forced to retire. Next who was out of the race was Kevin Magnussen due to puncture, but the Dane managed to get back after a tyre change.
Alonso was lucky to avoid injuries
The start of the race was a nightmare for Mercedes as Vettel took the lead and Hamilton dropped to the sixth position. Reigning champion suffered and couldn’t move up while Ferrari looked good on the way to victory. But, in lap 16 race was red-flagged after a crash in which were involved, Fernando Alonso and Esteban Gutierrez. The Spaniard in McLaren made a mistake as he tagged the rear of the Haas car, his front wheel was ripped off, then he hit the barrier and rolled into the gravel. Luckily, both drivers were unhurt in this accident.
Video – Fernando Alonso crash at 2016 Australian Grand Prix
After some 15 minutes, the race was restarted and Vettel kept his lead ahead of Nico Rosberg who was desperate to close the gap. Kimi Raikkonen soon after retired on lap 22 after problem with his Ferrari. Hamilton still had a problem to overtake Toro Rosso drivers while behind him was an interesting battle between Romain Grosjean, Nico Hulkenberg and Valtteri Bottas.
Rosberg’s confident driving
In the second part of the race, Ferrari paid a price for wrong tactics. Vettel pitted probably too early allowing Rosberg to take the lead and the German in Mercedes stayed on the top till the end. Vettel struggled late in the race and was overtaken by Hamilton who finished second and Vettel had to settle for third.
Great debut for Haas F1 Team
Local favorite Daniel Ricciardo must be happy with fourth place, just as Williams’ Felipe Massa with fifth. Romain Grosjean finished sixth making excellent debut for Haas team while Nico Hulkenberg was seventh. Remaining points went to Valtteri Bottas, Carlos Sainz Jr and Max Verstappen who missed a chance for a better result after making a mistake while being too aggressive in a try to move up.
Next stop of the Formula 1 circus is Bahrain, during the first weekend in April.