Sebastian Vettel won the first race of the new 2018 F1 season in Australia after taking the opportunity behind the safety car in the middle of the race and jumped Lewis Hamilton and Kimi Raikkonen.

Vettel was third in the first stage of the race but stayed longer on the track than his team-mate Raikkonen and the leading man Hamilton and took advantage of the safety car before his entry into the pits.

Vettel did not have the trouble to keep the win after taking the lead, and Hamilton took a short ride out of the track as he tried to catch him and finished 5.9 seconds behind in the second place.

Raikkonen finished third as he secured double podium finish for Ferrari in the first race of the season.

In the first corner of the first lap, Magnussen passed Verstappen on the outside and allowed the leading three to break away, and the Dutchman spun off trying to keep up with Haas and fell to the eighth place.

Sainz wandered wide in the turn 9 and enabled Alonso to take over his position, followed by two chaotic Haas pitstops which denied them big points in today’s race.

Magnussen parked his Haas VF-18 in the third corner after his rear left wheel was not securely fastened, and Grosjean retired a lap later after a similar problem.

This caused the conditions of a virtual safety car that Ferrari had used very well, just as McLaren, called Raikkonen early on as Mercedes had to cover them with Hamilton.

Vettel remained several laps longer and made his stop when the others had to drive slower and returned in front of Hamilton.

Soon after came out a real safety car, and Hamilton had 26 laps to pass Vettel.

But that did not work as he locked the wheels in the turn 9 and went on the grass. It threw him three seconds behind Vettel, and although he was back at his tail again, he did not managed to passhim.

Raikkonen finished third and managed to keep Ricciardo in Red Bull while Alonso finished fifth in McLaren thanks to the safety car and kept Verstappen at bay.

Hulkenberg had a relatively quiet race for Renault in seventh place and followed Alonso and Verstappen until the end of the race, and Bottas was able to score points starting from 15th and finished eighth.

Vandoorne finished ninth in second McLaren and pressed Bottas in Mercedes in the closing stages of the race while Sainz won the final point in the first race of the season in the second Renault.

In addition to Haas’s mistakes that caused Magnussen and Grosjean to retire, Williams also retired with Sirotkin after problems with brakes. Ericsson in Sauber also retired after steering problems and Gasly in Toro Rosso after problems with the Honda engine.

RESULTS

1 5 Sebastian Vettel Ferrari 58 1:29:33.283
2 44 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 58 1:29:38.319 5.036
3 7 Kimi Räikkönen Ferrari 58 1:29:39.592 6.309
4 3 Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull/TAG Heuer 58 1:29:40.352 7.069
5 14 Fernando Alonso McLaren/Renault 58 1:30:01.169 27.886
6 33 Max Verstappen Red Bull/TAG Heuer 58 1:30:02.228 28.945
7 27 Nico Hülkenberg Renault 58 1:30:05.954 32.671
8 77 Valtteri Bottas Mercedes 58 1:30:07.622 34.339
9 2 S.Vandoorne McLaren/Renault 58 1:30:08.204 34.921
10 55 Carlos Sainz Renault 58 1:30:19.005 45.722
11 11 Sergio Pérez Force India/Mercedes 58 1:30:20.100 46.817
12 31 Esteban Ocon Force India/Mercedes 58 1:30:33.561 1:00.278
13 16 Charles Leclerc Sauber/Ferrari 58 1:30:49.042 1:15.759
14 18 Lance Stroll Williams/Mercedes 58 1:30:51.571 1:18.288
15 28 Brendon Hartley Toro Rosso/Honda 57 1:29:55.759 1 krug
(7) 8 Romain Grosjean Haas/Ferrari 24 36:32.878 Wheel
(9) 20 Kevin Magnussen Haas/Ferrari 22 33:31.467 Wheel
(16) 10 Pierre Gasly Toro Rosso/Honda 13 20:11.451 Power steering
(16) 9 Marcus Ericsson Sauber/Ferrari 5 7:55.096 Hydraulics
(19) 35 Sergey Sirotkin Williams/Mercedes 4 6:26.147 Brakes

DRIVERS’ CHAMPIONSHIP

1 Sebastian Vettel 25
2 Lewis Hamilton 18
3 Kimi Räikkönen 15
4 Daniel Ricciardo 12
5 Fernando Alonso 10
6 Max Verstappen 8
7 Nico Hülkenberg 6
8 Valtteri Bottas 4
9 S.Vandoorne 2
10 Carlos Sainz 1
11 Sergio Pérez 0
12 Esteban Ocon 0
13 Charles Leclerc 0
14 Lance Stroll 0
15 Brendon Hartley 0
Romain Grosjean 0
Pierre Gasly 0
Kevin Magnussen 0
Sergey Sirotkin 0
Marcus Ericsson 0

CONSTRUCTORS’ CHAMPIONSHIP

1 Ferrari 40
2 Mercedes 22
3 Red Bull/TAG Heuer 20
4 McLaren/Renault 12
5 Renault 7
6 Force India/Mercedes 0
7 Sauber/Ferrari 0
8 Williams/Mercedes 0
9 Toro Rosso/Honda 0
Haas/Ferrari 0
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