Sports

Peel Street buzzing with excitement on eve of Canadian Grand Prix

Peel Street buzzing with excitement on eve of Canadian Grand Prix

The nature of the power-sensitive Circuit Gilles Villeneuve meant Mercedes arrived in Montreal as favourites, although the decision to delay its engine upgrade until the next race in France appeared to swing the initiative back in Ferrari's direction.

Hartley crashed out early at the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve after an opening lap collision.

The German started from pole position and never trailed on Sunday as he posted his third win in seven Formula One races this year and the 50th of his career.

Nico Hulkenberg and Carlos Sainz of Renault, Esteban Ocon of Force India and Charles Leclerc of Sauber also finished in the points.

"Perfect is probably a good way to describe it". I'm more happy about winning here and what it means.

"The only feeling I have is that we have to wake up".

The team took some time to find its pace over the weekend with Vettel not fully at ease with the auto until qualifying when he found the set-up he wanted to deliver an impressive pole, from which he dictated the race and converted into an equally impressive win. It's Vettel's fourth pole on the Ile Notre-Dame, and his first since 2013.

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While Vettel made a clean getaway from the start, with Verstappen nearly passing Bottas, there was chaos behind when Williams' Canadian Lance Stroll squeezed Toro Rosso's Brendon Hartley into the wall.

The absolute dead silence from Fernando Alonso as his McLaren team instructed him to retire his auto in his 300th career F1 race was both poignant and strangely hilarious.

Hamilton's early pit-stop on an enforced two-stop strategy, due to an engine heating problem, had done him no favours, but when Raikkonen pitted after 33 laps the Englishman was able to hang on and regain fifth as the Ferrari rejoined.

The top three kept their positions from the start, with Vettel leading from pole position ahead of Bottas and Verstappen. Bottas was first to blink on lap 37, Vettel following one lap later, both going to super-softs.

Fernando Alonso would have hoped to make Q3 in his 300th Grand Prix weekend, but he had to settle for P14 after finishing Q2 more than a second off the pace.

"We knew that, in general, we're lacking power, so we just try to compensate with that", said Verstappen. He didn't reply even to the apology from his race engineer: "Sorry, mate". Ferrari have not won the drivers' championship since 2007 when it was Kimi Räikkönen who claimed the title for them and after Vettel's previous victories in Australia and Bahrain, this result gives great impetus to their attempt to end the drought. A grandstand finish looked possible until Bottas ran off at Turn One and took to the grass before recovering.


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