/Fernando Alonso Dominates 2013 China Grand Prix

Fernando Alonso Dominates 2013 China Grand Prix

2013 China Formula 1 GP 9 at Fernando Alonso Dominates 2013 China Grand Prix

Fernando Alonso dominated 2013 China Grand Prix, in what happened to be quite a boring race except for the last 6 laps. When everyone was expecting more problems within the Red Bull team, Alonso took the lead and said “bye bye” to everyone else.

2013 China Formula 1 GP 1 at Fernando Alonso Dominates 2013 China Grand Prix

Qualifying proved to be a test of tyre compounds with serious consideration given to saving the mediums for the race. The soft compounds lose their life quickly, so pit stops will come early. Vettel and Button qualified on the mediums, so they have the advantage of a longer first stint.

This race will be all about the tyres and pit strategy. Hamilton is on pole, Kimi is second and Alonso is third. Mark Webber starts from the pit lane on fresh softs after breaking a fuel regulation after a technical problem saw him stop on track during Q2.

2013 China Formula 1 GP 2 at Fernando Alonso Dominates 2013 China Grand Prix

Off the line Kimi made a terrible start that enabled Alonso and Massa to pass into 2nd and 3rd behind Hamilton.

Although he’d made up 3 places, Webber pitted at the end of lap 1 to get rid of the soft compounds, meaning he could use mediums throughout the rest of the race. This left him at the back of the pack.

Lap 4 and Lotus’ Romain Grosjean set the fastest time and passed the Mercedes of Nico Rosberg in doing so. A lap later and both Ferraris passed the Mercedes of Hamilton with ease, as the Mercedes struggled with its tyres.

2013 China Formula 1 GP 3 at Fernando Alonso Dominates 2013 China Grand Prix

Vettel managed to pass Rosberg on Lap 6, with both Mercedes cars eventually diving into the pits for fresh rubber, meaning Rosberg would lose some time waiting for the release of Hamilton.

The race presented more drama when Sauber’s Esteban Gutierrez made contact with Force India’s Adrian Sutil on Lap 7, which ended up with the Sauber in the pits with a broken rear wing and mechanics deploying fire extinguishers on a small fire. Alonso and Kimi then pitted, which released Massa for the lead.

Not happy with the tyre degradation, Massa pitted a lap later, and after coming out behind Red Bull’s Webber, Massa finally regained position on lap 9.

2013 China Formula 1 GP 4 600x374 at Fernando Alonso Dominates 2013 China Grand Prix

At this point of the race, Hulkenberg Vettel and Button are all 1-2-3 having started on the medium compounds, although Alonso was beginning to reel them in at a second a lap.

Race leader, Hulkenberg and Vettel then pit together, and after a fast stop by the Red Bull crew, Vettel manages to jump Hulkenberg.

It just seems Mark Webber is the unluckiest driver in the history of F1, as more drama came when he hit the sister Toro Rosso of Jean–Éric Vergne diving up the inside on lap 16. Webber subsequently needed to pit. Whilst all this took place Kimi hit the back of Perez, damaging his front N-plate, but despite the damage he manages to pass Perez on lap 17.

More bad luck for Webber as the previous clash eventually lead to a broken rear and, trundling back to the pits, the rear wheel actually came off and nearly took out teammate, Vettel.

2013 China Formula 1 GP 5 at Fernando Alonso Dominates 2013 China Grand Prix

Lap 21 saw a change in race leader as Alonso flew past Button into turn 1. Hamilton and Kimi both pitted together from 3rd and 4th, and despite Lotus deciding not to change Kimi’s damaged nose, they couldn’t get him out ahead of Hamilton.

Alonso and Button pitted on lap 24, promoting Vettel to race leader. Meanwhile, Rosberg retired for the second time this season.

Now with fresh boots on his Ferrari, Alonso started to fly, a blistering 1.5 seconds quicker than Vettel, which eventually sees him easily pass Vettel for the lead. Meanwhile, Hamilton passed Button for 4th place.

2013 China Formula 1 GP 6 at Fernando Alonso Dominates 2013 China Grand Prix

Another bit of drama unfolded on lap 37 when Hulkenberg and Massa left the pit lane side by side, Massa beating the Sauber as Nico failed to get off the limiter.

On lap 38, Hamilton pitted and lost position to Kimi Raikkonen when he rejoined a place behind in 5th.

2013 China Formula 1 GP 7 at Fernando Alonso Dominates 2013 China Grand Prix

A few laps later Alonso pitted, releasing Vettel as race leader, although the Red Bull would have to make another stop.

Lap 43 and it didn’t take Alonso long to catch and pass Vettel to regain the lead. A few laps on and Kimi passed Button for 3rd at the hairpin.

At this point, Alonso had a significant lead, and although his team told him not to push on lap 47, Alonso set the fastest time, replying: “I’m not pushing.” The other teams’ hearts must’ve sunk hearing that one.

The remaining laps began to really liven up when Hamilton started closing in on Raikkonen for 2nd. Whilst this was going on Vettel began to knock a staggering 3 seconds off Kimi’s and Hamilton’s times.

2013 China Formula 1 GP 8 at Fernando Alonso Dominates 2013 China Grand Prix

Even though Alonso had already passed the chequered flag, the battle for second was a closely fought game of defending, and even a few mistakes were made as they duelled right up to the line.

China Grand Prix Final Race Standings

Driver Name Car # Team Start # Fastest Lap  Total Race Time  Points
1 Fernando Alonso  3 Ferrari  3 1:39.506  1:36:26.945  25
2 Kimi Raikkonen  7 Lotus  2 1:39.955  1:36:37.113  18
3 Lewis Hamilton  10 Mercedes  1 1:39.981  1:36:39.267  15
4 Sebastian Vettel  1 Red Bull  9 1:36.808  1:36:39.470  12
5 Jenson Button  5 McLaren  8 1:38.058  1:37:02.230  10
6 Felipe Massa  4 Ferrari  5 1:40.284  1:37:07.772  8
7 Daniel Ricciardo  19 Toro Rosso  7 1:40.240  1:37:09.636  6
8 Paul Di Resta  14 Force India  11 1:40.101  1:37:18.029  4
9 Romain Grosjean  8 Lotus  6 1:40.563  1:37:20.368  2
10 Nico Hulkenberg  11 Sauber  10 1:40.630  1:37:23.543  1
11 Sergio Perez  6 McLaren  12 1:41.281  1:37:30.805  0
12 Jean-Eric Vergne  18 Toro Rosso  15 1:40.138  1:37:39.549  0
13 Valtteri Bottas  17 Williams  16 1:38.200  1:38:00.806  0
14 Pastor Maldonado  16 Williams  14 1:40.968  1:38:02.398  0
15 Jules Bianchi  22 Marussia  18 1:41.537  lapped  0
16 Charles Pic  20 Caterham  20 1:41.997  lapped  0
17 Max Chilton  23 Marussia  19 1:41.978  lapped  0
18 Giedo van der Garde  21 Caterham  21 1:42.357  lapped  0
19 Nico Rosberg  9 Mercedes  4 1:43.378  retired, 21 laps  0
20 Mark Webber  2 Red Bull  22 1:43.416  retired, 15 laps  0
21 Adrian Sutil  15 Force India  13 1:44.257  retired, 5 laps  0
22 Esteban Gutierrez  12 Sauber  17 1:44.775  retired, 4 laps  0

Driver Standings after China Grand Prix

Driver Name Nationality Team Points
1 Sebastian Vettel German Red Bull Racing-Renault 52
2 Kimi Räikkönen Finnish Lotus-Renault 49
3 Fernando Alonso Spanish Ferrari 43
4 Lewis Hamilton British Mercedes 40
5 Felipe Massa Brazilian Ferrari 30
6 Mark Webber Australian Red Bull Racing-Renault 26
7 Nico Rosberg German Mercedes 12
8 Jenson Button British McLaren-Mercedes 12
9 Romain Grosjean French Lotus-Renault 11
10 Paul di Resta British Force India-Mercedes 8
11 Daniel Ricciardo Australian STR-Ferrari 6
12 Adrian Sutil German Force India-Mercedes 6
13 Nico Hulkenberg German Sauber-Ferrari 5
14 Sergio Perez Mexican McLaren-Mercedes 2
15 Jean-Eric Vergne French STR-Ferrari 1

Team Standings after China Grand Prix

Team Points
1 Red Bull Racing-Renault 78
2 Ferrari 73
3 Lotus-Renault 60
4 Mercedes 52
5 McLaren-Mercedes 14
6 Force India-Mercedes 14
7 STR-Ferrari 7
8 Sauber-Ferrari 5
9 Williams-Renault 0
10 Marussia-Cosworth 0
11 Caterham-Renault 0

(Journalist) – James is a published fiction and article writer from London (UK) with a serious penchant for Ferrari F1, anything with an engine, and English Pointers.