Sebastian Vettel: "It Feels Better Winning Here Than in Australia"

Race winner Sebastian Vettel of Germany and Ferrari celebrates in parc ferme during the Bahrain Formula One Grand Prix

The race boiled down to a strategic battle between Ferrari and Mercedes, with Bottas using a fresher set of tyres in the closing stages to attack the Ferrari which had led from the start. It would be up to those three men to take the race from Sebastian Vettel. Kimi Raikkonen's pit stop, which Ferrari had hoped would help him get a jump on Hamilton, ended in a disaster.

Ferrari were keeping their feet firmly on the ground - since Vettel's win was overshadowed by a botched pit stop for Kimi Raikkonen, in which a mechanic broke his tibia and fibula bones, and the Finnish driver was forced to retire instead of fighting for the podium.

Daniel Ricciardo qualified fifth on Saturday but his Red Bull teammate Max Verstappen managed only 15th after crashing in Q1.

Toro Rosso's Pierre Gasly was the driver of the day after finishing fourth, with Red Bull's parent team endured a miserable day as both cars retired on the second lap.

That represented a best result of the V6 turbo hybrid era for Honda, Toro Rosso's engine partners after three nightmare years at McLaren.

Nico Hulkenberg was eighth for Renault ahead of Force India's Esteban Ocon and team mate Carlos Sainz.

Bottas slipped adrift of Vettel after the first stint, the gap hovering around six seconds, but was equipped with Mediums, as opposed to the Softs employed by Ferrari. Hamilton got a good getaway from ninth but backed off as he came up behind Magnussen's Haas, eventually dropping him to tenth behind Alonso.

Following a pit stop, the Ferrari driver mistakenly made contact with a member of his team.

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When normal race conditions resumed, Vettel led away from Bottas ahead of Raikkonen, Gasly and Magnussen. He used DRS to pass Alonso on the straight and then passed both Ocon and Hulkenberg who were squabbling on the approach to Turn 1.

"We had nothing to lose trying to stay out and trying to win", explained Vettel as he analyzed his long run on deteriorating tires.

"So, I did the maths in the auto and I thought he was going to catch me". We were losing a little bit at the end and Bottas was getting closer. Hamilton was brought into the pits for his one and only pit stop at the end of the lap, also switching to mediums that would take him to the chequered flag.

All that makes it 2:0 for Ferrari over Mercedes.

"Hopefully when we go to the next race we'll have a better understanding of the tyres and hopefully put up a better fight with the Ferraris".

"Valtteri and Lewis are pushing very hard". He closed in on Vettel but as they approached the braking zone he wasn't quite close enough to attempt a move without risking an accident. Vettel stopped for the soft rubber on lap 19 with Raikkonen in a lap later for the same tyres.

Hamilton meanwhile came from ninth, after a five-place grid penalty, to secure a record-equalling 27th successive points finish.

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