Grand Prix of Brazil – Race

The most exciting part of Qualifying happened in the first few moments of Q1 when HAM lost the tail of his Mercedes, slid across the corner and into the tyre wall. Without setting a time, HAM will start right at the back of the grid.

Provisional grid: BOT, VET, RAI, VER, RIC*, PER, ALO, HUL, SAI, MAS, OCO, GRO, VAN, MAG, HAR*, WEH, GAS*, STR, ERI, HAM
*Penalties to be applied for RIC (+10), HAR (+10), GAS (+25)

Sitting at the end of the pit lane, waiting for the green light, is local driver MAS – this is his last home Grand Prix as he’s retiring at the end of this season … just the same as last year!

Christian Horner said there’s a 50% chance that one of their cars (presumably RIC) won’t finish the race because of old engine components

It’s confirmed that HAM will start from the pit lane
Revised grid, with penalties applied: BOT, VET, RAI, VER, PER, ALO, HUL, SAI, MAS, OCO, GRO, VAN, MAG, RIC, WEH, STR, ERI, HAR, GAS, HAM

Air temperature 28°C; track 60°C; not a cloud in the sky

Ferrari mechanics are huddled around RAI’s car on the dummy grid – they’ve taken a side panel off and have a bunch of laptops plugged in
Radio for RAI telling him it was a concern with the strength of the telemetry signal

Mechanics clear the grid
BOT leads off on the formation lap
Bit of a slow getaway from VET but he’s allowed to reclaim his place unless he drops all the way to the very back – he was only passed by a couple of cars, so no issue there
HAM sits at the pit exit

01/71: VET makes a good start and takes P1 into Turn 1
VAN and RIC collide – RIC spins, and VAN has stopped
Safety Car deployed
OCO & GRO collide – OCO has a puncture
Replay shows GRO fighting with oversteer

02[SC]: Cars have to go through the pit lane
Looks like MAG is out too

03[SC]: VET, BOT, RAI, VER, ALO, MAS, PER, HUL, SAI, GAS, ERI, HAR, STR, HAM, WEH, GRO, RIC; retirements: OCO, MAG, VAN
Everyone has to come through the pit lane again
Replay of the start shows RIC lost the tail on the kerb; it was MAG hitting VAN as RIC spun across in front of them

04[SC]: Radio for ALO telling him that some cars have pitted and may try to go to the end without stopping again
Incident involving VAN, RIC & MAG has been noted
Incident involving GRO & OCO has been noted

05/71[SC]: Main straight is now clear so they don’t use the pit lane this time
VET, BOT, RAI, VER, ALO, MAS, PER, HUL, SAI, GAS, ERI, HAR, STR, HAM, WEH, GRO, RIC
Radio for VER asking about track conditions; he says “sunny” 🙂
SC in at the end of this lap
VET slows to back everyone up ready for the restart

06: MAS passes ALO for P5
HAM takes P13 from HAR

07: VET fastest lap 1:13.666
PER attacking ALO
HAM past STR for P12
RIC inside WEH for P15

08: VET f/lap 1:13.649

09: HAM past SAI for P9

10/71: VET, BOT, RAI, VER, MAS, ALO, PER, HUL, HAM, SAI, GAS, ERI, STR, RIC, HAR, WEH, GRO
Radio for HAR – seems like there’s a problem with their radio link

11: RIC passes STR and ERI to move up to P12
HAM takes P8 from HUL

13: RIC past GAS for P11
PER has HAM hot on his tail

14: PER defends but HAM goes round the outside for P7
PER fights back but HAM holds his new position

15/71: VET, BOT, RAI, VER, MAS, ALO, HAM, PER, HUL, SAI, RIC, GAR, STR, ERI, HAR, WEH, GRO
RIC easily inside SAI for P10

18: Radio check for HAR shows it’s working again

19: RIC takes P9 from HUL

20/71: VET, BOT, RAI, VER, MAS, ALO, HAM, PER, RIC, HUL, SAI, GAS, STR, HAR, ERI, WEH, GRO; retirements: OCO, MAG, VAN
ALO doesn’t put up a lot of a fight as HAM goes inside him into Turn 1 to take P6

21: BOT f/lap 1:13.626
MAS is HAM’s next target; takes a look but backs off
HAM makes another move and this time takes P5 from MAS

22: Radio from VER – tyres are going off
10-sec penalty for GRO for the lap 1 incident with OCO (GRO is running last, so not really a significant penalty)

23: HAM f/lap 1:13.485

25/71: VET, BOT, RAI, VER, HAM, MAS, ALO, PER, RIC, HUL, SAI, GAS, STR, HAR, WEH, ERI, GRO
HAM is 17secs behind VET

26: HAM f/lap 1:13.320

27: HAM f/lap 1:13.124 – he’s ~0.5sec quicker than VER who is 6secs ahead

28: BOT pits from P2; soft tyres go on; 2.7sec stop; rejoins P5
MAS pits; rejoins P11

29: VET and VER pit; VET rejoins just a car length ahead of BOT; VER rejoins P7
RIC inside PER for P5

30/71: RAI pits; rejoins P4
VER takes P6 from PER

31: VET f/lap 1:12.996

33: VER easily past teammate RIC for P6

34: RAI f/lap 1:12.945

Half distance

36: VER f/lap 1:12.864

39: STR harrying GRO over P15
HUL takes P10 from GAS

40/71: HAM, VET, BOT, RAI, VER, RIC, MAS, ALO, PER, HUL, GAS, SAI, WEH, ERI, GRO, STR, HAR; retirements: OCO, MAG, VAN
VER 1:12.763

41: STR dives inside GRO, locks up and GRO reclaims P15
HAM laps STR
Radio for HAR – “have to retire the car”

42: HAR pits and retires the Toro Rosso

44: HAM pits from P1; supersofts go on; rejoins P5
RIC pits; supersofts too; rejoins P8

45/71: VET, BOT, RAI, VER, HAM, MAS, ALO, RIC, PER, HUL, SAI, GAS, WEH, ERI, GRO, STR
RIC takes P7 from ALO

46: HAM f/lap 1:12.423
STR makes his move on GRO stick this time, taking P12

48: GAS inside STR to steal P13
HAM laps STR

49: HAM has to go around GAS to lap him – both STR and GAS could have been more helpful

50/71: VET, BOT, RAI, VER, HAM, RIC, MAS, ALO, PER, HUL, SAI, WEH, GAS, STR, ERI, GRO; retirements: HAR, OCO, MAG, VAN
GRO pits; serves his 10-sec penalty; rejoins P16/last

51: HAM closing on VER

54: Radio from STR complaining about a flat spot
Radio from VER complaining about his tyres too

55/71: VET, BOT, RAI, VER, HAM, RIC, MAS, ALO, PER, HUL, SAI, WEH, GAS, STR, ERI, GRO
HAM about 3sec behind VER, who in turn is ~4.5sec behind RAI

56: ALO is closing on MAS

59: HAM attacks VER into Turn 1; VER defends well
HAM attacks again; this time he takes P4

60/71: VET, BOT, RAI, HAM, VER, RIC, MAS, ALO, PER, HUL, SAI, GAS, WEH, STR, ERI, GRO

61: HAM f/lap 1:11.932

62: Radio from VER asking to pit for new tyres; team say preference is to stay out; VER pushes again for new tyres

63: HAM f/lap 1:11.918
VER pits from P5; rejoins still P5, well ahead of his teammate

64: HAM f/lap 1:11.845
Gaps are VET -2.6sec- BOT -1.8- RAI -1.8- HAM

65/71: VET, BOT, RAI, HAM, VER, RIC, MAS, ALO, PER, HUL, SAI, GAS, WEH, STR, ERI, GRO
VER f/lap 1:11.044

67 = 5 laps left: HAM within DRS range of RAI
HAM locks up

68: Looks like HAM’s tyres may have gone off

69: STR’s front left tyre is starting to fall apart
STR pits

70/71: HAM is still all over the rear of RAI
MAS is holding off ALO for P7; PER is joining that fight

71 = final lap: HAM takes a look but RAI defends P3

VET takes the chequered flag
MAS defending like crazy

Provisional result: VET, BOT, RAI, HAM, VER, RIC, MAS, ALO, PER, HUL, SAI, GAS, ERI, WEH, GRO, STR
DNF: HAR, OCO, MAG, VAN

Nice to see ALO applauding MAS in the pit lane
Great to see MAS on the podium, even if wasn’t for a trophy

Final race of the season is 2 weeks away, in Abu Dhabi.

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