Monday, April 21, 2014

Another 1-2 Sweep For Mercedes

SHANGHAI, CHINA - That Mercedes is setting the pace for the 2014 Formula One season was confirmed by Lewis Hamilton’s brilliant run in Shanghai.  Hamilton, who has moved one ahead of Jim Clark with most poles by a British driver, finished a full 18 seconds ahead of teammate Nico Rosberg.  This is the third race this season that the German marque finished 1-2.  “This is a team on a roll, that’s for sure,” Hamilton said. “I’m going to be working hard, we’re going to keep working hard because obviously the others are pushing hard to catch us.”  Rosberg worked hard for his second place finish starting 4th on the grid then dropping to seventh after a poor start.

It was a better weekend for Ferrari achieving its first podium finish in 2014 with Fernando Alonso finishing 3rd.  Ferrari appeared to make some good improvements in the car after Bahrain.  “It was a good weekend,” said Alonso. “We did improve the car a little bit compared to the first three races, so we felt more competitive and now in the race being here on the podium is some kind of surprise for us, a nice surprise finally. . 

Teammate Kimi Raikkonen could manage no better than eight place, 50 seconds behind Alonso. Rumors that the Swede is losing focus and determination were strongly rejected by Raikkonen, though he does admit that his driving is struggling. "In the race I was just too slow, but there is not one big problem that we have found,” he said.

Four time World Champion Sebastien Vettel, who last year appeared to be super-human, has struggled with the newly designed v-6 turbo cars. For the second race this year, Vettel has been asked to pull-over for his quicker teammate, Daniel Ricciardo. When first asked by team principal Christian Horner to allow Ricciardo to pass, Vettel was surprised, but after a few laps he understood that he was behind the pace. "I'm not yet where I want to be with the car, but it's an ongoing process,” said the champion.

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