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Alonso takes China GP victory

2013-04-14 10:59

WELL-DESERVED WIN: Ferrari's Fernando Alonso had avery special win after a well-deserved race in the China GO 2013 on Sunday, April 14. Image: AFP

JANINE-LEE GORDON

SHANGHAI, China - Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso took the Chinese GP title with a sterling win and dominating drive with Lotus's Kimi Raikkonen second and Mercedes's Lewis Hamilton third.

Alonso's win is the first for Ferrari of the 2013 season and the champion's 31st victory. He took his first win in China in 2005 with Renault.

Lap one saw Lewis Hamilton stick to pole position with the two Ferraris right on his tail from the start. With no DRS to his disadvantage, Felipe Massa and Fernando Alonso both overtook the Brit on lap five

POOR, POOR WEBBER

Red Bull’s Mark Webber pitted as early as lap two  to change to a harder compound tyre in a strategic move since he was placed at the back of the grid due to a fuel pressure issue on Saturday during qualifying but it was all came to naught when Toro Rosso’s Jean-Eric Vergne hit Webber on lap 15 and broke the Australian's front wing.

Webber tried to make his way back to the pits but his wheel came rolling off in what seems to be an unrelated issue to the contact with Vergne. Sadly, Webber saw an early retirement making his weekend go from bad to worse.

Kimi Raikkonen was a bit frustrated with Sergio Perez when he tried to go left and wide but the Mexican squeezed back in front of him. The Iceman’s tip of his car’s nose was damaged in the incident and stayed that way for the rest of the race.

Force India’s Adrian Sutil and Sauber’s Esteban Gutierrez were taken out of the race on lap six.

McLaren’s Jenson Button enjoyed the lead for a while and managed to do quite a few laps on the same set of tyres from the start of the race.

Nico Rosberg was having some trouble with his Mercedes and pitted thrice in 21 laps, shortly afterwards he was back in the garage and retired.

Ferrari’s Alonso took the lead from Button on lap 21 and that’s where he stayed setting a 12.3sec gap from the rest of the pack.

Toro Rosso seemed to be delivering on some of the glimpses of promising performance they have been showing during the 2013 season thanks to Daniel Ricciardo which saw him finish seventh.

FIGHTING TO THE END

Button passed Massa on lap 51 on new tyres and was pushing hard in sixth. Vettel was still due for a tyre change and pitted on the same lap while he was second. He was then instructed to race to the finish.

On lap 52 Alonso was still in the lead with Kimi Raikkonen second and Hamilton third.

Force India’s Paul di Resta was also fighting hard to make some points in the top 10 along with Lotus Romain Grosjean and Sauber’s Nico Hulkenberg.

Hamilton fought hard to keep Vettel off the podium even while his tyres were on the very last and managed to keep third place. Alonso was all smiles after a well-deserved win.

Result from 2013 Chinese GP at Shanghai International Circuit
1 Fernando Alonso (Spain) Ferrari 1h36:26.945
2 Kimi Raikkonen (Finland) Lotus - Renault +00:10.168 3.
3 Lewis Hamilton (Britain) Mercedes +00:12.322
4 Sebastian Vettel (Germany) RedBull - Renault +00:12.525
5 Jenson Button (Britain) McLaren +00:35.285
6 Felipe Massa (Brazil) Ferrari +00:40.827
7 Daniel Ricciardo (Australia) Toro Rosso - Ferrari +00:42.691
8 Paul Di Resta (Britain) Force India - Mercedes +00:51.084
9 Romain Grosjean (France) Lotus - Renault +00:53.423
10 Nico Huelkenberg (Germany) Sauber - Ferrari +00:56.598

Fastest lap: Sebastian Vettel,1min36.808, lap 53.

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