F1 2016 Chinese Grand Prix result: Rosberg wins as Hamilton finishes seventh
PUBLISHED: 10:20 17 April 2016 | UPDATED: 16:14 17 April 2016
Formula One world champion Lewis Hamilton trailed home seventh in the 2016 Chinese Grand Prix in a damaged Mercedes as Nico Rosberg completed a hat-trick of victories this season.
Mercedes driver Rosberg won in China from pole position with a majestic drive around the Shanghai International Circuit.
He lost the lead early on to Daniel Ricciardo but soon overtook the Red Bull racer and stormed to his sixth consecutive victory and 17th of his F1 career.
Rosberg’s Silver Arrows colleague from Hertfordshire, Hamilton, who started from the back of the grid, battled through the field to finish seventh after another incident-packed race.
The 31-year-old Stevenage-born driver’s race was compromised by a collision on the opening lap with a Sauber which caused damage to his Mercedes.
His front wing became detached in the incident, and damaged the underneath of his car. Hamilton pitted and the car’s broken nose was extracted and a new one fitted.
Hamilton made five pit stops in total during the race to Rosberg’s two – stopping on laps 1, 5, 6, 21, and 30 – and his injured Mercedes was lacking downforce after his lap one incident.
Nevertheless, Hamilton still made 18 overtakes today.
“I tried everything I could guys but it was lost at the start,” said Hamilton over the team radio.
Rosberg took the chequered flag in the provisional race results nearly 38 seconds clear of Ferrari driver Sebastian Vettel in second place.
Daniil Kvyat claimed the final podium position for Red Bull ahead of team-mate Ricciardo, who battled his way into the points after earlier suffering a puncture.
Kimi Raikkonen finished fifth for Ferrari after 56 laps of the Shanghai circuit with Williams driver Felipe Massa sixth ahead of three-time world champion Hamilton.
Rosberg, with three grands prix wins out of three this season and six in succession going back to 2015, now leads the drivers’ championship by 36 points from Hamilton.
Mercedes also lead Ferrari by 53 points in the Constructors’ Championship.
After claiming his second victory in Shanghai, four years after sealing his first Formula One win at the same venue, Rosberg said: “It’s been a fantastic few days for me here in China.
“First of all, the fans have been amazing from the moment I arrived. They’re so enthusiastic, which gives us drivers a very special feeling.
“Then, racing wise, it was an almost perfect weekend. Only the start could have been better – but luckily I was able to pass Daniel later on the straight and from then on I could build up a gap.
“I must say, I’ve never had a better balance in my car than I had today.
“It was really perfect, so a big thanks to everyone who helped me achieve that.”
Rosberg also thanked his family afterwards.
“I also want to thank all the women in my life – my wife, my daughter and my mother,” he said.
“Their support is unbelievable and that’s really what makes it possible for me to be doing what I’m doing.
“I’m a very happy man today and, after three races I can be really pleased about how my season has gone so far.
“But it’s a very long year ahead and there’s a lot of points still on the table, so I’m not losing my focus.”
Toto Wolff, head of Mercedes-Benz Motorsport, praised Rosberg.
He said: “Nico enjoyed the perfect weekend: he was totally dominant this afternoon, always in control of his performance and did really a flawless job.”
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