F1: Rosberg dominates the Spanish Grand Prix

    Published On May 11, 2015 10:50:00 AM

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    The German took his first victory of the season as the Mercedes secured a commanding one-two at Spanish Grand Prix.

    Nico Rosberg took his first victory of the season as the Mercedes Formula 1 team secured a commanding one-two at the Spanish Grand Prix at Barcelona.

    The German led away from pole and remained unthreatened for the duration of the race, with his team-mate Lewis Hamilton second 17.5 seconds adrift and Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel 27.7s further back in third at the finish.

    Rosberg closes the gap to team-mate and championship leader Hamilton to 20 points, with Vettel another 11 adrift.

    The result underlined the fact Mercedes remains the class of the field on a circuit where its strong car aerodynamically gave it a larger advantage than normal.

    After four exciting races to start the season, the first European race of the season will not go down as a thriller, with the Circuit de Catalunya's layout not conducive to much overtaking.

    That meant Rosberg, who had only led 10 laps this season before arriving in Spain, was always going to be favourite for the win after taking pole position and the German duly controlled the race from the front.

    Hamilton lost a place to Vettel at the start and after struggling to find a way past, Mercedes called him in to try the undercut.

    But a problem fitting the left-rear tyre lost Hamilton three seconds so when Vettel pitted the next lap, he easily came out in front of the reigning world champion.

    When Hamilton was told he had to pass Vettel on track, he responded: "I can assure you that's pretty much impossible. Find another solution."

    When the Briton pitted for the second time, taking on the hard tyres after two stints on the mediums, it became clear he was on a three-stop strategy.

    In contrast, Vettel stayed out to suggest he was on a two-stopper. When the German pitted with 26 laps to go, he rejoined behind Hamilton, who was pushing hard to try to build a gap to enable him to pit and rejoin ahead of Vettel.

    And it worked out, with Hamilton exiting the pits after his third stop, and on fresher medium tyres, well clear of Vettel.

    Hamilton traded fastest laps with Rosberg in the closing stages but the deficit to his team-mate was too great to close down in the remaining laps and he finished second to secure a 14th one-two as a pairing for Mercedes.

    Valtteri Bottas finished fourth for Williams, ahead of Ferrari's Kimi Raikkonen and the other Williams of Felipe Massa.

    Red Bull's Daniel Ricciardo continued his solid run in the points this season with seventh, albeit it a lap down, ahead of Lotus's Romain Grosjean, who scored points for the third successive race despite a gearbox problem and overshooting his pitbox and scattering his crew, who were unhurt.

    Toro Rosso's Carlos Sainz Jr finished ninth, after banging wheels and passing Red Bull's Daniil Kvyat on the final lap. The Russian completed the points-finishers.

    Max Verstappen was 11th in the other Toro Rosso, ahead of Sauber's Felipe Nasr, whose team-mate Marcus Ericsson was two places adrift in 14th. Both Toro Rossos swiftly fell back from their row-three qualifying positions.

    Force India, which is expecting to have its updated 'B-spec' car in Austria, ended a difficult weekend with Sergio Perez 13th and Nico Hulkenberg 15th respectively.

    McLaren's wait for its first points of the season continues, with Jenson Button - making his 100th start for McLaren - 16th while his team-mate Fernando Alonso retired with brake problems after a spell running seventh on an alternative strategy.

    Bad luck continued for 2012 Spanish GP winner Pastor Maldonado, who ran as high as seventh. He retired having driven much of the race with a broken rear wing.

    The Manor-run Marussias brought up the field, with Will Stevens three laps down in 17th and Roberto Merhi 18th, a further lap behind.

    RESULTS - 66 LAPS:

    PosDriverCarGap
    1Nico RosbergMercedes1h41m12.555s
    2Lewis HamiltonMercedes17.551s
    3Sebastian VettelFerrari45.342s
    4Valtteri BottasWilliams/Mercedes59.217s
    5Kimi RaikkonenFerrari1m00.002s
    6Felipe MassaWilliams/Mercedes1m21.314s
    7Daniel RicciardoRed Bull/Renault1 Lap
    8Romain GrosjeanLotus/Mercedes1 Lap
    9Carlos SainzToro Rosso/Renault1 Lap
    10Daniil KvyatRed Bull/Renault1 Lap
    11Max VerstappenToro Rosso/Renault1 Lap
    12Felipe NasrSauber/Ferrari1 Lap
    13Sergio PerezForce India/Mercedes1 Lap
    14Marcus EricssonSauber/Ferrari1 Lap
    15Nico HulkenbergForce India/Mercedes1 Lap
    16Jenson ButtonMcLaren/Honda1 Lap
    17Will StevensMarussia/Ferrari3 Laps
    18Roberto MerhiMarussia/Ferrari4 Laps
    -Pastor MaldonadoLotus/MercedesRetirement
    -Fernando AlonsoMcLaren/HondaBrakes

    DRIVERS' STANDINGS:

    PosDriverPoints
    1Lewis Hamilton111
    2Nico Rosberg91
    3Sebastian Vettel80
    4Kimi Raikkonen52
    5Valtteri Bottas42
    6Felipe Massa39
    7Daniel Ricciardo25
    8Romain Grosjean16
    9Felipe Nasr14
    10Carlos Sainz8
    11Max Verstappen6
    12Nico Hulkenberg6
    13Sergio Perez5
    14Marcus Ericsson5
    15Daniil Kvyat5
    16Fernando Alonso0
    17Jenson Button0
    18Roberto Merhi0
    19Will Stevens0
    20Pastor Maldonado0

    CONSTRUCTORS' STANDINGS:

    PosConstructorPoints
    1Mercedes202
    2Ferrari132
    3Williams/Mercedes81
    4Red Bull/Renault30
    5Sauber/Ferrari19
    6Lotus/Mercedes16
    7Toro Rosso/Renault14
    8Force India/Mercedes11
    9McLaren/Honda0
    10Marussia/Ferrari0
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