Having outperformed the triple world champion in Bahrain and also in Sochi, Valtteri Bottas finally grasped his maiden win in 81 F1 races due to an outstanding piece of audacity. Rushing past both Ferraris on the way to Turn One, the Finnish driver managed to set a pace, which even Sebastian Vettel didn’t dare to emulate.
Ferrari and Mercedes are actually launching an alarming gulf on the rest of the hot field. Hideaway amid the excitement of the Scuderia’s blistering tempo in qualifying was the striking truth that Red Bull, leaders of four of the last seven constructors’ titles, turned to be more than 1,5 seconds back. In particular, Daniel Ricciardo’s usual puppyish enthusiasm was over almost completely. The Australian was forced to retire early because of his brakes overheating, while the team currently faces a challenging bout to restore the overall competitiveness to the Renault engine before the EU summer campaign burst out.