2014 World Champion Lewis Hamilton celebrated his special victory in Sochi, as the win moved him closer to his third world championship. This second running of the GP race at Sochi Autodrom, a street circuit built around Olympic Park, was action packed and watched by Russian President Vladimir Putin, who also personally greeted the winner.
But the second Mercedes’ driver Nico Rosberg was not fortunate; he started on pole position into a lead on the first lap, but had to retire on lap seven, when he ran into a throttle problem. Hamilton, who was behind his team-mate, then took the lead and claimed victory, his ninth of the season; this win means that, if he is ahead of Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel and Rosberg in the next race in Austin, Texas, he could seal the title for a third time.
As for Rosberg, his hopes for the world title this season are likely to be over, as he is also seven points behind his compatriot Vettel, who took second place on Sunday.
Sergio Perez of Force India managed to make third on the podium, with Felipe Massa in fourth for Williams.
Ferrari's Kimi Raikkonen was fifth until the final lap, when he dramatically collided with his fellow countryman, Williams' Valtteri Bottas. The Ferrari driver was subsequently penalised for 30-seconds for causing the crash and moved to eighth place.
Red Bull driver Daniil Kvyat moved up and took fifth at his home event, while Sauber's Felipe Nasr was sixth, ahead of Pastor Maldonado for Lotus.
The two McLaren drivers, Fernando Alonso and Jenson Button, took the final two points positions, in what was one of the most positive races in the season for them. This was 250th GP meeting for the Spaniard, who spent most of the race on Button's tail. But unfortunately he was penalised with a five-second time penalty for exceeding track limits, and finished with without a point; the 17 year-old Toro Rosso driver Max Verstappen was promoted to 10th.
There were several high-speed crashes during the race; the one involving Lotus's driver Romain Grosjean in lap 12 added to the dramatic conclusions of the Russian GP. Luckily, Grosjean was not injured. #Formula 1