Rosberg wins as bungled McLaren pit stop ruins Button’s chances!

Nico Rosberg won the Chinese Grand Prix in Shanghai from pole position with a 20 second margin as he took the chequered flag. I’m really happy for Rosberg, he has driven brilliantly overall since joining Mercedes from Williams in 2010, a mature controlled drive from the German and just for a change Mercedes hit the ‘sweet spot’ to reduce tyre wear massively from previous races!

The McLaren duo of Jenson Button and Lewis Hamilton finished in second and third respectively. Button had a chance to win the race but a bungled pit stop ruined the Briton’s chances of the win, dropping him back to sixth behind a train of drivers vying for second place. It wasn’t until the final few laps that the Frome Flyer managed to get past the gaggle of cars in front of him as the other driver’s tyres started to fade, Button on fresher rubber because of his three stop strategy. Hamilton was also charging up the ranks using the same three stop strategy as Button during the final dozen laps, moving up from eighth to third by the time the chequered flag was waved.

Lotus’ Kimi Raikkonen was running in second before his tyres “fell off a cliff” just a handful of laps before the end of the race, falling back to 10th before pitting, eventually finishing in 14th while his team mate Romain Grosjean finished a strong sixth place just one second behind Sebastian Vettel who was struggling with tyre wear as the race came to it’s climax, falling back from third to fifth as Hamilton and team mate Mark Webber put moves on the German in the penultimate lap!

The Williams resurgence continued in China as Bruno Senna and Pastor Maldonado finishing in seventh and eight places respectively. Sir Frank’s team scored double the amount of points on Sunday as they did in the whole of the 2011 season; Williams have scored 18 points from the first three races and it should have been more if it weren’t for misfortune and crashes. Still not up there with their championship winning heyday but a decent showing compared to last year!

Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso couldn’t follow up his shock race win in Malaysia with another podium; only managing 9th place; the Ferrari lacked ultimate pace to be at the sharp end of the grid in Shanghai, team mate Felipe Massa failed to score for the third consecutive race finishing in 13th place. The final point went to Sauber’s Kamui Kobayashi, who started the race in third place, but couldn’t compete with the McLaren’s, Mercedes’, Red Bull’s and Renault’s during the race.

Michael Schumacher who started on the front row alongside his Mercedes team mate Rosberg; thanks to Lewis Hamilton’s five place grid penalty for changing a gearbox retired on lap 12 while running second due to a wheelnut not being secured properly, you could see the mechanic’s frustration as Schumacher drove out of the pit box, a huge opportunity for a 1-2 gone begging!

Three consecutive third place finishes for Lewis Hamilton sees him top the world drivers title race, sitting on 45 points, two points ahead of team mate Button and Ferrari’s Alonso is a further six points adrift, 20 points cover the top six places. McLaren are leading the constructors championship, 24 points ahead of Red Bull with Ferrari in 3rd place, a massive 57 points behind!

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