Ferrari's easy Canada win a 'wake-up call' to Mercedes

Ferrari's easy Canada win a 'wake-up call' to Mercedes

With the victory, Vettel took a one-point lead over Mercedes' Lewis Hamilton in the Formula One standings.

It was the Italian team's first Canadian GP win since Michael Schumacher in 2004, a race Vettel watched on television as a teenager at home in Germany.

The Canadian Grand Prix top three in qualifying: Valteri Bottas (2nd), Sebastian Vettel (1st) and Max Verstappen (3rd).

"That's why I am just taking this one". Vettel's lone pit stop on the 38th of 70 laps saw him emerge with a six-second lead.

Yet, amid a season in which the balance of power at the front between the top three teams has ebbed and flowed on nearly a race-to-race basis, Hamilton remains convinced Mercedes have it in their power to emerge on top again. "There's a long way to go in the season so I am not bothered about the title now, but it's a good side effect for me".

"I was just really happy to finish", said Hamilton.

"I have so many different opinions about it".

"I honestly think - and we do as a team - that if we would have chosen one or two sets more of the hypers, potentially we could have extracted a tiny bit more out of those in qualifying because it was quite limited running for us". Max Verstappen was third and the other Red Bull vehicle, driven by Daniel Ricciardo, was fourth.

Mercedes brought just five sets of the hypersoft per driver to Montreal, while rivals Red Bull and Ferrari had eight. "Ferrari was better than us this week, with the Red Bull very close to us, so I think there was nothing we could have done better".

Victory in the 2018 Canadian GP gives Vettel the championship lead with 121 points to Hamilton's 120
Victory in the 2018 Canadian GP gives Vettel the championship lead with 121 points to Hamilton's 120

"Their auto is fantastic and the engine, too".

Kimi Raikkonen finished sixth, followed by the Renault teammates of Nico Hulkenberg and Carlos Sainz Jr.in seventh and eighth.

Behind the leaders, there was chaos when Williams's Canadian Lance Stroll squeezed Toro Rosso's Brendon Hartley into the wall.

Initially, it was the French driver who got the better start and overhauled the French cars on the opening lap, a mistake in the pits would prove costly, however, as the Mercedes junior only finished ninth.

A steward's investigation found neither driver at fault.

"I am still here to win, I still believe we can win", Hamilton said.

The only other retirement besides Stroll and Hartley was McLaren's Fernando Alonso who reported a loss of power due to an exhaust problem and was forced to garage his vehicle - a disappointing end to the Spaniard's 300th race.

The prospect of an engine failure prompted the Briton to criticize Formula 1's current three-engine limit that came into force at the start of the 2018 season, insisting the restriction has a bearing on the sport's spectacle.

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