Hamilton wins F1 Canadian GP, picks up points on Vettel

Hamilton and Vettel qualified alongside each other on the front row and were expected to stage a close fight in the race for superiority in a race the Mercedes driver really needed to win to boost his title hopes.

The post-race awards to the top three were presented by Britsh actor Patrick Stewart.

"A cruise like we had today was something we didn't have for a long time so I'll take that", said Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff, who had spoken in Monaco two weeks ago of them being underdogs now.

'Max took his chance on the outside and ran over our front wing.

"It was clear with the damage we had that unless there is trouble at the front or we are extremely lucky with safety cars or whatever that it would be hard".

The damage was sufficient to force Vettel into an unscheduled stop later on, which left him in a recovery drive - as he climbed back up from 18th to eventually finish fourth. That ended the race for Sainz and Massa, while Grosjean pitted for a new nose piece.

Vettel regretted that he and the team did not realise the extent of the front wing damage right away and missed the chance to change it under the safety auto for Carlos Sainz Jr and Felipe Massa's crash.

Hamilton only saw the damage in his mirrors.

Mexican Sergio Perez finished fifth after a bruising battle with his Force India team-mate Esteban Ocon of France, who was sixth. More importantly for us, we've got a better understanding of the vehicle and hopefully we can put it in the same spot for the coming races - we know now after the last race where to develop this auto moving forward and that is going to really make a difference in winning this championship.

"We have finally taken a one-two finish and done so at a track that we expected would be hard for us", Wolff said. After Perez was told to let Ocon pass so he could challenge Ricciardo on his fresher tires, he radioed back: "Let us race, man. Please".

Finn Kimi Raikkonen finished seventh in the second Ferrari ahead of German Nico Huelkenberg of Renault, with local hero and teenage rookie Lance Stroll of Canada taking ninth for Williams and Frenchman Romain Grosjean 10th for Haas.

"My first points! It is special. Although Monaco would've been a good one to win, I am happy it happened early in the season".

"I think it should put us in a strong position from here moving forwards".

"I just committed halfway down the straight and said 'I go down the inside no matter what, '" Vettel recalled.

Two-time world champion Fernando Alonso continued to struggle with his McLaren Honda.

"They did such great work analysing what went wrong and giving us a summary and saying this is where we went wrong".

"The grandstand was too far away, so I said I would not get there if I throw the gloves", he said. Then I almost lost it fighting back, I was late into Turn 8.

  • Jo Lloyd