Ricciardo did a perfect standing start and he became first leaving Rosberg behind, while Raikkonen and Vettel were doing badly their first turn leaving an opening to Kvyat who enjoyed it. A little bit later, Ricciardo’s tyre blew-up, letting know everybody his race was over. Rosberg took the lead from there until the end. It is a pity that such a competitive Red Bull and Ferrari were damaged by few episodes because later Vettel recovered until the second place and Kvyat achieved a nice third position leaving Ricciardo and Raikkonen out of the podium.
Great sixth place the one obtained by Massa, who was capable to defend himself by an aggressive Hamilton. The British pilot did 5 stops, one of them to change his front wing damaged after start. A nice 8th place was achieved by Verstappen who did a nice race with his Toro Rosso, followed by Sainz who got a 9th place.
Rosberg is the winner of GP China 2016
This third consecutive victory allows Rosberg to advance in the final list: 75 points versus 39 of Hamilton. Just behind there is our Ricciardo with 36 points. For sure after start, he did not deserve that puncture that forced him to get just a final fourth place. The perfect level of this RB12 was confirmed by the great performance of Daniil Kvyat who got a nice podium. Talking about Daniil, it is inevitable to come-back to his start, especially when he did the first turn, where there is not any specific guilt. He did not brake too late and he was perfectly on the right path. He did not behave like a “torpedo” but he saw an opening where to go and he used it. In fact, he was always close to the kerb on his right. If Ferrari’s cars were on an external line, this is not the Russian fault. For sure, Sebastian discovered too late the position of the Red Bull car and he did not recover on time as well as Raikkonen. At the end, that contact between the two pilots was inevitable. It should and it would be better to close this situation by saying it was just a race incident. It is quite normal to see a chaos after start when there is such a concentration of cars at a very slow turn. It is a waste of time to give a real responsibility to someone or to look for a pilot to punish.
Kvyat was not guilty for the crash between Raikkonen and Vettel
Kvyat received Vettel and his critics in the backstage with surprise and a smile. Perhaps, the smile upset even more Sebastian Vettel and exaggerated his reaction. In this argument there are specific consequences either competitive ones or psychological ones that can not be ignored. Vettel hit his team mate and damaged his car. This created some guilt inside him (he apologized multiple times by radio), so he might have looked for someone to discharge his anger. We know Vettel is a bit toady to the brand and his team so this moved him to look for someone to blame. It is difficult in that case to distinguish when the judgment of an expert pilot is fair or not, especially if he is involved in the action. What really matters, after a couple of laps. Nico Rosberg was in a perfect situation where he could do whatever he wanted. He did not have to use the safety car and followed his strategy of just two stops.
Vettel argues with Kvyat
About our Daniel, the Australian pilot got two main good points: first of all he is a great pilot, second of all he got a nice personality. He is always in a good mood and he never give-up. Pushed back until the 17th place due to a puncture in his tire, Red Bull’s pilot started a great recovery performing a big amount of overtakes. One of them, it was against the champion Hamilton. At the end of his race, he said:
There were many cars which touched after start. I saw some debris but it did not look like there was nothing really big. That puncture came by surprise. I was unlucky because the safety-car pushed me even more behind. It was like if I received a punch in my belly but after this it was the best race of my career. Race after race, we are showing a power we did not even know to have. I think we have a great potential and this season is even more exciting. I am a bit disappointed because I could not spray the champagne on the podium, but one side of me is satisfied about the result. This is an indication we will have another chance in the future