A successful strategy of the Ferrari team, which did not win a Formula One race since September 2015, gave victory to four-times world champion Sebastian Vettel, who beat three-time British champion Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes) delaying the change of tires, a winning choice.
Ferrari has returned, and has done so with the intelligence needed to take advantage of the only stop of the Australian Grand Prix in their favor, in a race in which Hamilton left the pole without problems, but Mercedes was wrong to To advance his stop, after which it was blocked after the Red Bull of the Dutch Max Verstappen, while Vettel took a definitive distance.
The first test of Formula One 2017 provided a different winner, after a year in which the German ‘silver arrows’ only yielded two victories in 21 races, in a not particularly entertaining race but marked by the strategic work from the garages , This time winner for Ferrari.
No red rider was raised to the top of a Formula One podium for a year and a half, when Vettel celebrated the Singapore Grand Prix 2015. Ten years after the last Ferrari victory at Albert Park, where the Finn Kimi Raikkonen was the last Ferrari to win his 2007 World Championship.
Ferrari reached the start of the 2017 season after a journey through the desert of the dictatorship of Mercedes, too long for the Italian house to be made with the 225th victory of its history, which finally arrived in Melbourne.
The ‘silver arrows’ were the great victims of the race, with a bad strategy for Hamilton, who even suffered in the end with his Finnish teammate Valtteri Bottas, who was faster in the second half of the race than he and got close , And did not endanger his second place by team orders.
Raikkonen won the fourth, followed by Verstappen, the protagonist with his Red Bull after withdrawal by mechanical problems of the Australian Daniel Ricciardo. He was followed by Brazilian Felipe Massa (Williams), sixth, and Mexican Sergio Pérez (Force India), seventh.
Carlos Sainz (Toro Rosso) finished eighth ahead of his Russian teammate Daniil Kvyat, who was forced to miss out on team decisions but was soon overtaken by mechanical problems, with Frenchman Esteban Ocon (Force India ), Benefited by the suspension of the suspension of Spanish Fernando Alonso (McLaren-Honda), who abandoned three laps from the end.
Also injured by the mechanics was the local idol, Australian Daniel Ricciardo (Red Bull), penalized with five positions at the start to change the gearbox, which stopped the car on the reconnaissance lap, which already Made it out of garages and gave the fret with his career, which lasted 25 laps until he was definitely stopped.
The start required two attempts, after the first one was aborted by the problems of Renault’s German Nico Hülkenberg, in a perfect start for Hamilton, who left cleanly and retained his first place, just like most of the drivers of the first eight places.
Just an incident between the Swedish Marcus Ericcson (Sauber) and the Danish Kevin Magnussen (Haas) in a totally clean exit, after which Hamilton was flying, but with Vettel on his heels, in an exchange of fast laps that prevented the British Increase its distance beyond two seconds; While Bottas, third, and Raikkonen, fourth were off the hook
On lap 15, the Frenchman Romain Grosjean (Haas) was forced to take his car to the workshops and to leave by the smoke that came out of his car. The withdrawal of the sixth, and one of the surprises of the classification, made Sainz and Alonso win a position, seventh the Madrid and tenth the Asturian.
Two laps later, the strategies began. Hamilton was the first to stop and lay the soft tire, while Vettel and Ferrari opted to hold the ultrablando out and try to distance the English, who was in fifth place, behind a Verstappen that would be crucial.
Perez and Sainz also stopped, with the Mexican ahead of the Spaniard shortly after leaving the workshops, in a maneuver in which there was a slight clash between cars. Thus remained the ninth and tenth Spanish, in the last places of scoring.
Vettel was on his way to stretch his advantage, while Hamilton suffered to try to overtake Max Verstappen, fourth at that time and did a decisive favor to Vettel to endure the rush of English, which would give the four-time champion German the definitive distance.
rivers and saw that even Bottas cut him off. The German Ferrari treasured 8 seconds away with 20 laps to see the checkered flag, and ten laps later even extended it by a few tenths.
They were practically not moving positions, with Sainz and Alonso closing the points zone after the Spaniard was forced to pass through team orders to his Russian teammate Daniil Kvyat, but then he returned to eighth by a step through garages of Kvyat, and even approached the seventh of Mexican Sergio Perez.
Alonso, who appeared to have controlled the tenth position, suffered a five-lap break from the suspension, while at the same time being overtaken by Frenchman Esteban Ocon and German Nico Hülkenberg just before his retirement.
With Hamilton’s pursuit impossible, Vettel had only to manage his lead to complete the 57 laps of the Australian Grand Prix and celebrate a Ferrari-primed triumph, which resulted in an instant party in the ‘cavallino rampante’ garage and in Hopes for the public in a Formula One 2017 with more contenders than in previous seasons