Bottas seals first ever F1 win in Russian Grand Prix

Bottas seals first ever F1 win in Russian Grand Prix

Lewis was one of the first ones to congratulate Valtteri on his first race victory and I think that shows the respect that they have towards each other.

Team Mercedes driver Valtteri Bottas took a strong lead as he boosted off from the third place of the starting grid passing two Ferraris on the front line and with the half of the race completed he enjoyed nearly a four-second advantage over his closest rival Sebastian Vettel.

The Finn looked on course for a straightforward win until a rare slip saw him damage a tire.

Bottas claimed his maiden F1 victory on Sunday while Hamilton was forced to settle for fourth behind the two Ferraris.

Vettel brought the gap down to three seconds as Bottas negotiated traffic in the next eight laps before the Mercedes driver made his pit stop on lap 27, and Ferrari chose to use a different strategy to put Vettel back in the fight.

'It took quite a while to win - more than 80 races for me - but it was definitely worth the wait and worth the learning curve.

The 27-year-old Finn joined Mercedes after last year's champion, Nico Rosberg, surprisingly announced his retirement.

"This unusual opportunity came over the winter to join this team and I have to thank the team for making this possible", he added after meeting Russian president Vladimir Putin before spraying champagne on the podium.

"But, I don't know what happened".


Vettel, who had started on pole, hunted Bottas down in the latter part of the race.

Sebastian Vettel conceded the day belonged to Valtteri Bottas at the Russian Grand Prix despite his clear frustration at being held up by Felipe Massa in the closing stages.

"It doesn't matter", Vettel said of the incident with Massa. Big congratulations to Valtteri. Renault's Nico Hulkenberg, Williams' Felipe Massa and Toro Rosso's Carlos Sainz completed the top 10 drivers chart at the Sochi Auto Drome in Russian Federation. Bottas is third, 10 points further back. Red Bull is a distant third with 57 points. Later, he added: "Why is my vehicle overheating, guys? We're out of the race now", Hamilton told his team on lap 16. "People always think that we have something against each other because we have come close to each other and crashed into each other a few times but no, I'm very happy for him to win".

Bottas' teammate from Mercedes, Lewis Hamilton, finished in the fourth place.

"I am delighted [about Bottas's win], but the emotions they came out and it's a little bit bittersweet because Lewis is P4 and we didn't have the pace on his vehicle and we need to understand why", Wolff told United Kingdom broadcasters Channel 4.

'I can't explain it right now, but we will do some work over this week to fully understand it, ' Hamilton said.

With the European season proper starting in Spain next week, and teams promising upgrades and a faster pace of development, the two frontrunners return to their factories with two wins apiece.

Fifth place went to Max Verstappen, followed by Sergio Perez in sixth and Esteban Ocon in seventh. Red Bull's Daniel Ricciardo also had to retire with engine trouble.

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