Publicado: Lun, Abril 16, 2018
Global | Por Milagro Delgado

Ricciardo: "Awesome" win worth 50 races like Bahrain

Ricciardo:

Starting from P6, the Australian produced a majestic performance for his first win of the season - a week after retiring on the second lap in Bahrain.

Kimi Raikkonen took third place for Ferrari but title contenders Lewis Hamilton and Sebastian Vettel both endured trying afternoons, the four times world champions ending up fourth and eighth respectively. He led for the first 20 laps but fell back, first due to a pit stop and then after a collision with Red Bull's Max Verstappen on the 43rd lap. Bottas and Vettel had already passed the pit entry when the safety auto was deployed so could not have pitted.

Still, Gasly's Red Bull paymasters won't be too upset, since the safety auto period to clean up the debris helped the senior team somewhat.

With faster tyres that were also ten laps fresher than that of the Mercedes and Ferrari drivers that they were chasing and little time lost due to pitting under the safety auto period, Verstappen and Ricciardo were suddenly placed with a genuine shot at an unlikely victory.

Mercedes' Valtteri Bottas nabbed second place on the podium, despite being neck and neck with Ricciardo throughout the race ahead of Kimi Raikkonen of Ferrari, third.

Renault's Nico Hulkenberg finished sixth for Renault, ahead of Alonso whose aggressive overtaking move on Vettel was "noted" by stewards.

Hamilton leaves China second in the championship, and just nine points behind Vettel, but he wasn't happy after what he called "a disaster" of a weekend.

Daniel Ricciardo made a string of thrilling overtaking moves to snatch a surprise Chinese Grand Prix victory on Sunday after a safety auto strategy gamble by his Red Bull team paid off handsomely.

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To have fresher tyres available to push to the end of the race was instrumental in helping Ricciardo's remarkable push to victory and Verstappen's fifth place.

Further down the field, Vettel was obviously suffering with a damaged auto, as Fernando Alonso squeezed past the German on lap 55 to take seventh place, with the Ferrari driver complaining of having been pushed off the track.

The Australian than powered off into the distance to secure his first victory since last year's Azerbaijan Grand Prix, with Bottas second for the second successive race.

Daniel Ricciardo at the post-race press conference: "Once I was aware we had the pace I wasn't going to let it slip". "We were giving everything we had and it kind of felt like we deserved victory". "We really thought we were going to start the race from the back, just over 24 hours later to be here now... this sport's insane". The team were rewarded for getting out in qualy but this is the best reward. "I'm thankful for a couple of incidents that kept us kind of in the battle". Bottas moved late to cover but there was just a car's width on the inside and Ricciardo took full advantage as the pair came perilously close to contact.

Quick across FP1 and FP2, the Briton was out-qualified by the two Ferraris and his teammate Valtteri Bottas, resulting in P4 on the grid. "Once you get close it is so hard to follow people". "This was not what I expected".

"This is racing, these things happen".

BC-CAR-F1-Chinese Grand Prix, 3rd Ld-Writethru, 638 Red Bull's Ricciardo wins Chinese Grand Prix; 6th career winAP Photo CHF132, CHF126, CHF108, CHF159, CHF124, CHF123Eds: Updates with race details, quotes.

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