Daniel Ricciardo of Red Bull grabbed his first win of the 2017 Formula 1 campaign during Sunday’s Azerbaijan Grand Prix, surviving an incident-filled and non-stop drama race. Valtteri Bottas of Mercedes took second place from Williams rookie Lance Stroll on the final straight.
It was an afternoon of non-stop drama at the Baku City Circuit, featuring no less than three safety-car periods and a red-flag race stoppage.
Sebastian Vettel and Lewis Hamilton had a controversial incident, and the latter had to pit due to a 10-sec penalty (Vettel) and loose headrest (Hamilton), while Bottas and Kimi Raikkonen made contact on the opening lap, dooming their chances of winning.
Ricciardo had a poor start but took full advantage of several safety-car stints and the numerous incidents to grab an unexpected win. Canadian teenager Lance Stroll looked set to finish second until pipped on the final straight by Valtteri Bottas. The Williams new boy is the youngest driver, at 18 years, to claim an F1 podium in his rookie season.
Behind him Vettel and Hamilton were powering along on 4th and 5th, Esteban Ocon took 6th for Force India despite crashing into his teammate Sergio Perez while fighting for third spot, while Fernando Alonso scored the first points of a disastrous season for McLaren in 9th spot after a spirited drive.
The rest of the standings:
This was the race of the season, when almost all of the top finishers were drivers who met misfortune early on, though it will undoubtedly be just as well remembered for the clash between Hamilton and Vettel which has soured their previously sporting battle. For the rest of the drama, see the race highlights: