22nd of April 2013 Author: Johnny Karp
Red Bull's Sebastian Vettel snatched his second win in four races this season as he controlled the Bahrain Grand Prix from the first lap to the last. The world champion finished before Lotus drivers Kimi Raikkonen and Romain Grosjean, who denied Paul di Resta a first career podium in the closing laps. Di Resta had, like Raikkonen, done one fewer pit stops than the other leading drivers but could not hold Grosjean. Lewis Hamilton finished fifth for Mercedes as Fernando Alonso managed to come in eighth after suffering a rear wing failure.
"It was a faultless, seamless race from start to finish," said Vettel. "I knew it was crucial to get into the lead and look after the tyres, the pace was phenomenal, the car was great. I could push every single lap and look after the tyres. I lost out to Fernando at the first corner, but I could get him back. I saved some Kers and could out-accelerate him into Turn Six. Out of Turn four I did the same on Nico, a little bit of Kers and got him into Turn Five. It was incredible the pace we had today, we surely did not expect that."
The win extends Vettel's lead over Raikkonen in the championship to 10 points, with Hamilton in third but a further 13 points behind and Alonso fourth, 30 points behind Vettel. The German held off a challenge from Alonso on the opening lap, losing out through Turns One and Two before re-passing the Ferrari with a fine move around the outside into Turn Five. Vettel then passed pole-winner Nico Rosberg's Mercedes and then drove away into a commanding race, making three stops on his way to a third consecutive victory in Bahrain.
Behind the eventual winner, Raikkonen used a two-stop strategy to move up to from eighth on the grid to take second place, while Grosjean, making three stops, passed Di Resta for third with six laps to go. "Yesterday wasn't ideal so we'd planned on Friday to try a two-stop and today it worked well," said Raikkonen. "I didn't have a strong first and second laps but after the first stop I was able to come back stronger so we had a good race in the end."
The win makes Sebastian Vettel a very strong favourite to win the Drivers' Championship this season, he is 5/6 to win it at Bet365 while Fernando Alonso is 12/5 to take the crown. Kimi Raikkonen is 6/1 to take the championship while the British drivers have pretty strong odds against them: Lewis Hamilton is 16/1, Jenson Button is 50/1 and Mark Webber is 60/1 to win the Drivers' Championship.
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