The Briton came from behind to beat Rosberg to the title in 2014, but the biggest deficit he ever faced was 25 points. “It was like a four-poster bed today”, Hamilton, who started last and put in a feisty drive to battle his way up to seventh, told reporters. The Chinese Grand Prix marks Formula One’s move from Asia to Europe.
The situation took a turn for the worse this past weekend as an ERS issue in qualifying meant Hamilton started from the back of the grid while Rosberg claimed an unchallged pole position.The 30-year-old has now become only the fourth driver in F1 history to win six successive races – a streak which stretches back to the end of last season.The Mercedes driver is now 36 points behind his teammate Nico Rosberg, who in Shanghai won his sixth consecutive race.The Mercedes driver is now 36 points behind his teammate Nico Rosberg, who in Shanghai won his sixth consecutive race.
But German Rosberg says he doesn’t see it like that, insisting the season is only “a handful of races” into its unprecedented 21-date 2016 calendar. Kyvat said: “That’s racing”. “This track is quite good, you can overtake, but the auto was pretty damaged – I don’t know what, probably some aero components”. In the Constructors’ Championship, Mercedes leads with 114 points versus the 61 of Ferrari and 57 of Red Bull. The next race on the calendar is the Russian Grand Prix in a fortnight.
The four-time world champion admitted he was fortunate even to finish the race. Lewis Hamilton gained credit for fighting back from last on the grid to seventh, but with three races gone the reigning world champion must be wondering when his season is finally going to start.But Hamilton, who has implored a positive attitude here – one perhaps not associated with his formative years in the sport – continued to remain upbeat on Sunday night. “But I have the utmost confidence in this team”.
“I think Sebastian’s frustrated, he’s embarrassed because he’s run into his team-mate – I don’t think Kvyat needs to hang his head at all on that one”.To which Vettel said: “You didn’t”. Lots can happen. It is just I don’t have any more jokers available really.”I definitely don’t feel the dark cloud I’ve had over me in the past right now”, he explained.
After Vettel and Raikkonen collided with each other at the opening corner – both having to take on replacement front wings – and then Daniel Ricciardo, who had beaten Rosberg off the line, suffered a tyre blow-out on the following lap, Rosbergs main opposition had been wiped out in the opening minutes of the race. Ricciardo eventually finished in fourth with Raikkonen fifth and Felipe Massa sixth in the Williams.
A bungled tyre strategy cost Vettel a potential win in the Melbourne season-opener while Raikkonen retired with flames shooting out of his car’s airbox. “If I don’t go to the left, you crash into us and we all three go out”. The collision came when Kvyat made an aggressive pass on the inside of Vettel, causing the German to swerve and hit Raikkonen on the outside.Another collision in the first lap Sunday damaged the front wing of his vehicle and led to the first of five pit stops for the British driver.