by M.C. – photo: ScuderiaFerrari | There is no middle ground in the constant rivalry between Mercedes and Ferrari: when congratulations are in order for one of the teams, the other is generally looking troubled and disappointed. The current season is proving to be a great example of this as seen at the Canadian GP. Sebastian Vettel (Ferrari) got his third win of the season at the Gilles-Vileneuve circuit in Montreal and raised to Hamilton’s level in the race for the title. After seven races there is now just a difference of one point between Hamilton, who finished in fifth position in Canada, and the German driver.
In this turbulent relationship, it is now the time for the Italian scuderia to smile again, just as they did at the beginning of the competition. Champion Lewis Hamilton’s silver bullets seemed hesitant at the start of the season, somehow unexpectedly given Mercedes’ good pre-season. At the same time Ferrari, led by their star Sebastian Vettel, got two of the victories (Australia and Bahrain). Then came Daniel Ricciardo and Red Bull’s triumph in China and subsequently things started to change: Hamilton then came first in Azerbaijan and Spain. At the Monaco GP, the Australian driver from Red Bull won again and the tide turned once more, this time in favour of the ‘cavallino rampante’ as demonstrated by yesterday’s win. Coincidences and curiosities aside, it is obvious that the feelings of joy or grief are never shared between the silver and red boxes: the smiles from one team are directly proportional to the long faces of the other…
No major surprises as a whole
But there was more to the Canadian GP than the everlasting battle between the Ferrari and Mercedes leaders. Valtteri Bottas achieved a well-received second position for the German scuderia. Max Verstappen was able to control his temper and take bronze, completing the podium. Right behind him came his team-mate Ricciardo in fourth place, and Hamilton and Raikkonen took the fifth and sixth positions respectively.
Behind the three major teams (Ferrari, Mercedes and Red Bull), which seem to be the only ones ever capable of winning, there were no major surprises. Hulkenberg and Sainz came in seventh and eight with Renault and Esteban Ocon came in ninth with Force India. Regrettably, Fernando Alonso had to abandon the race for the second time in a row due to problems with his car. This was the Spaniard’s 300th race, by no means an easy feat, but there could have been no worse way of commemorating it. Will his luck finally change this season?
Canadian GP results:
- Sebastian Vettel (Ger/Ferrari) 25 pts
- Valtteri Bottas (Fin/Mercedes) 18 pts
- Max Verstappen (Hol/Red Bull) 15 pts
- Daniel Ricciardo (Aus/Red Bull) 12 pts
- Lewis Hamilton (Gbr/Mercedes) 10 pts
2018 Driver Standings F1:
- Sebastian Vettel (Ger/Ferrari) 121 pts
- Lewis Hamilton (Gbr/Mercedes) 120 pts
- Valtteri Bottas (Fin/Mercedes) 86 pts
- Daniel Ricciardo (Aus/Red Bull) 84 pts
- Kimi Räikkönen (Fin/Ferrari) 68 pts