Sebastian Vettel may have won the Brazilian Grand Prix finishing 2.7 seconds ahead of the Mercedes of Valtteri Bottas but it was Lewis Hamilton who stole the show. Starting from the pit lane after crashing during qualifying the day before, Hamilton quickly worked his way through the field managing to threaten earning the final podium step as the laps ran out.
Kimi Raikkonen was sitting in third place as Hamilton closed. Raikkonen, who of late has made a career of defending his position late in the race, did just that, defend, and was able to keep Hamilton off the podium.
"I had a great time, I enjoyed the race very much." said Hamilton after the race "I had so much pace today, it would have been an easy win this weekend. So on the one side I am disappointed that I put myself in the worst position for today. But yesterday is behind me, today has been very positive, I had fun coming through – it felt like the go-karting days where I would always start in the back in my first year or two. My goal today was really to just try and redeem yesterday’s mistake, to make the team proud and get some points back. I was trying to get back to third, I just ran out of tires in the end. But I enjoyed the battle today and hopefully that continues to show to everyone that I still have a lot of fire in my heart and many, many more races to go."
Meanwhile, at the head of the field, Vettel was managing to hold off Bottas. Vettel had taken the lead ahead of Bottas at the start of the race while Haas’s Kevin Magnussen collided with McLaren’s Stoffel Vandoorne, who was in turn was ran into the side of Daniel Ricciardo’s Red Bull. Magnussen and Vandoorne were forced out of the race but the Australian was able to continue. The day got worse for Haas as Romain Grosjean and Esteban Ocon made contact resulting in the Force India driver being forced to retire.
“I think this was one of the most difficult races of the season, there was no time for mistakes." said Vettel "My start was not perfect, but enough to beat Bottas off the line. Then, Valtteri was always very close and we had the same pace, but I pushed very hard and managed to pull a gap. This win is very important for me and for the team. After such a long time it’s been great to achieve it. I’m happy for the whole team, because it has been through a tough couple of weeks, with long nights, hard work and a big support from the factory. I dedicate this win to all of them, to the guys here and to those who’ve been working in Maranello. It’s been very hard for us, but today is a great day and I want to thank my team and our tifosi. Hopefully we’ll have a good race in Abu Dhabi!”
Max Verstappen overcame a set of tires that were not to his liking to finish in fourth ahead of Ricciardo. Felipe Massa ended his second final Brazilian Grand Prix with a seventh place finishing ahead of Felipe Alonso and Sergio Perez. The final point on offer went to Renault’s Nico Hulkenberg.
2017 Brazilian Grand Prix – Race
1 Sebastian Vettel Ferrari 1’31:26.260
2 Valtteri Bottas Mercedes 2.762
3 Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 4.600
4 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 5.468
5 Max Verstappen Red Bull 32.940
6 Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull 48.691
7 Felipe Massa Williams 68.882
8 Fernando Alonso McLaren 69.363
9 Sergio Perez Force India 69.500
10 Nico Hulkenberg Renault 1 lap
11 Carlos Sainz Renault 1 lap
12 Pierre Gasly Toro Rosso 1 lap
13 Marcus Ericsson Sauber 1 lap
14 Pascal Wehrlein Sauber 1 lap
15 Romain Grosjean Haas 2 laps
16 Lance Stroll Williams 2 laps
Brendon Hartley Toro Rosso
Esteban Ocon Force India
Kevin Magnussen Haas
Stoffel Vandoorne McLaren
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