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Sunday, March 27, 2011

A walk in the park for Seb

Sebastian Vettel led from the start and eased to victory in Sunday's season-opening Australian Grand Prix, while Lewis Hamilton proved McLaren had indeed found something to come in second and Renault's Vitaly Petrov turned in a strong drive for third.

German Formula One driver Sebastian Vettel of Red Bull Racing celebrates with his throphy on the podium after winning the Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix at the Albert Park circuit in Melbourne, Australia, 27 March 2011. Photo: Jens Buettner dpa


Fernando Alonso finished fourth, but Ferrari was not much of a factor. Vettel's Red Bull teammate Mark Webber was not able to slot into second at the start, finishing fifth in his home race, and Jenson Button had one to forget. Unable to get by Felipe Massa in the early stages of the race, a particularly spirited effort found him on the run off road and on the receiving end of a drive through penalty.

Sauber Formula One driver Sergio Perez of Mexico drives during the Australian F1 Grand Prix at the Albert Park circuit in Melbourne March 27, 2011. Sauber drivers Sergio Perez and Kamui Kobayashi have been excluded from the Australian Grand Prix results for technical infringements, race organisers said on Sunday. REUTERS/Scott Wensley (AUSTRALIA - Tags: SPORT MOTOR RACING)


Perhaps the story of the day would have been Sauber, originally classified seventh and eighth with Sergio Perez leading the way. Unfortunately, both cars were later disqualified. According to AUTOSPORT: The rear wings did not comply with Articles 3.10.1 and 3.10.2 of the F1 Technical Regulations that demands wing parts do not have 'a local concave radius of curvature smaller than 100mm.' The team has appealed and is investigating.

The change in the results moves Sebastien Buemi up to eight and sees both Force Indias rounding out the top ten.

Williams Formula One driver Pastor Maldonado of Venezuela drives out of the track during the Australian F1 Grand Prix at the Albert Park circuit in Melbourne March 27, 2011. REUTERS/Mick Tsikas (AUSTRALIA - Tags: SPORT MOTOR RACING)


It was a bad day for Mercedes and Williams, both suffering double retirements. Among last year's new teams, Lotus still hasn't found that midfield pace, Jarno Trulli finishing 13th, two laps down, and Timo Glock, Virgin's highest runner, was not classified.

But the big story was Vettel, who blazed out ahead of the field and was never under threat. Given the debate over the team's decision not to use KERS this weekend, the German's challengers have their work cut out for them. It all continues in Malaysia in two week's time.

Formula One drivers stand in the starting grid during a minute of silence for victims of Japan before the start of the Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix at the Albert Park circuit in Melbourne, Australia, 27 March 2011. Photo: Jens Buettner dpa


Result

  1. Sebastian Vettel (Germany) RedBull 1hr 29:30.259 seconds

  2. Lewis Hamilton (Britain) McLaren +00:22.297

  3. Vitaly Petrov (Russia) Renault 00:30.560

  4. Fernando Alonso (Spain) Ferrari 00:31.772

  5. Mark Webber (Australia) RedBull 00:38.171

  6. Jenson Button (Britain) McLaren 00:54.304

  7. Felipe Massa (Brazil) Ferrari 01:25.186

  8. Sebastien Buemi (Switzerland) Toro Rosso 1 lap

  9. Adrian Sutil (Germany) Force India 1 lap

  10. Paul Di Resta (Britain) Force India 1 lap

  11. Jaime Alguersuari (Spain) Toro Rosso 1 lap

  12. Nick Heidfeld (Germany) Renault 1 lap

  13. Jarno Trulli (Italy) Lotus 2 laps

  14. Jerome d'Ambrosio (Belgium) Virgin 4 laps


  • Timo Glock (Germany) Virgin 9 laps not classified

  • Rubens Barrichello (Brazil) Williams 10 laps

  • Nico Rosberg (Germany) Mercedes 36 laps

  • Michael Schumacher (Germany) Mercedes 39 laps

  • Heikki Kovalainen (Finland) Lotus 39 laps

  • Pastor Maldonado (Venezuela) Williams 49 laps

  • Sergio Perez (Mexico) Sauber DISQUALIFIED

  • Kamui Kobayashi (Japan) Sauber DISQUALIFIED


Motorsports: FIA Formula One World Championship 2011, Grand Prix of Australia, children racer, Kinder, kids, fans


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FIA post-race press conference - Australia

Australian Grand Prix - selected team & driver quotes

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