Lewis Hamilton cruises to Spain victory

Phil Duncan

Hamilton put in a dominant performance at the Spanish Grand Prix on Sunday, winning easily and showing Ferrari that Mercedes remains the team to beat in Formula One.

Mercedes has struggled compared to Ferrari at times this season, with Sebastian Vettel winning the opening two races and taking three consecutive pole positions as the Scuderia had a more consistent vehicle.

Asked by Autosport just how important the Barcelona pole was to him in light of his recent form, he said: "We've had one pole, we haven't really had great qualifying sessions after that, so it was important for me to get back into a good position with qualifying, as it is usually a strength of mine". "Let's keep this up". However they were hooked up in qualifying and then proved to have the race pace to match, concluding with their first one-two this season.

"I am feeling really good in the vehicle at the moment". "It's a good feeling".

It was a record-extending 74th pole for Hamilton, and the first since the season-opener in Australia.

"I remember like it was yesterday sitting at home playing this computer game as Michael", Hamilton said.

"I think as a team, this weekend we've been ideal". He has some serious records.

After the early safety auto for a multi-car crash caused by Haas driver Romain Grosjean in Turn Three, Hamilton bolted at the re-start and had a 1.4-second lead at the end of the first racing lap.


Hamilton had also won in Azerbaijan two weeks ago, but that victory came mostly because of incidents involving his closest competitors, including a blown tire for Bottas, a mistake by Vettel and a crash between Red Bull teammates Daniel Ricciardo and Verstappen. Haas F1 Team's Kevin Magnussen finished sixth, while the Spanish crowd got a nice showing from Renault Sport F1 Team's Carlos Sainz Jr. and McLaren F1 Team's Fernando Alonso, with the two Spaniards finishing seventh and eighth. Bottas, who started alongside his team-mate in an all Mercedes front row, lost out to Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel at the start.

"Well of course I wanted to fight for the win of the race today, but for the team it was a good race", he said.

Vettel gave away his position when Ferrari chose to go for an extra stop and give the German driver fresher tires. Vettel and Raikkonen did not allow the fastest tyre to deliver the promised performance, and instead reverted back to the slower tyre. But staying out was not an option today.

"It obviously looks wrong, but from the inside it was the right thing to do", he said.

Vettel won in Australia and Bahrain, while Ricciardo was first in China.

A quick look at the race highlights from the Spanish GP. Again, Haas will be left wondering what might have been if both cars had stayed in the race after Romain Grosjean spun out on the opening lap. He had a spin shortly after the Ocon-induced virtual safety auto. "We tried our best, but something was missing and we need to improve on this".

"I kept going. It was not bad". I didn't know what the pace would be. "This is what racing drivers need, results, podiums and wins, and hopefully it is the beginning of a good phase".

Ferrari's Kimi Raikkonen retired near the halfway-point after losing power.

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