Hamilton won the pole position at the Spanish Grand Prix

Lewis Hamilton

Mercedes Lewis Hamilton has emerged victor of the Formula One Spanish Grand Prix in Barcelona ahead of teammates Valteri Bottas and Red Bull's Max Verstappen.

"If I had braked, the auto would have spun the same way. It worked out for Ricciardo and Verstappen in Shanghai and this is probably what they were thinking and I fully understand why they did it". The New Zealander, who is coming under increasing pressure in his first full season in F1, lost control of his Toro Rosso when he dipped two wheels on the grass on the entrance to the high-speed Turn 9. Well, if this stat wasn't enough, here's one more - Hamilton has had 30 consecutive points finishes, another Formula One record for the British driver. One of them was Haas driver Romain Grosjean, who spun his auto following the start into Turn 1, collecting Nico Hulkenberg and Pierre Gasly, which put all three out of the race with sufficient damage.

This was the first time this year that Mercedes had dominated a weekend. All three cars suffered heavy damage and the race was immediately brought under the control of the safety vehicle.

Behind the top four it was Daniel Ricciardo in a fairly distant fifth spot - although on the same lap as the top four at the finish - with the Haas of Magnussen in sixth, although his team mate, Romain Grosjean, managed to spin out on the opening lap.

By Lap 54, Hamilton was leading by 17.7seconds on medium tyres and one pit stop. On Friday Mercedes also looked like the faster auto over long runs, holding a 0.9s per lap advantage over Ferrari and 0.6s over Red Bull. Vettel offered three reasons for Ferrari's lack of performance in Spain, the second one being that with Pirelli's tyres that have been changed for this race (and the next two - Monaco and Canada).

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"Generally, he likes spinning, but on the first lap is not a good time to do it with everyone there".

But Red Bull can ill afford a repeat between the highly competitive pair, having insisted they apologise to the entire team after their Baku collision cost them valuable points.

Ferrari took the chance to stop Vettel for a second time in fear that his rubber would not last the course, but he was stationary for more than five seconds which allowed Bottas, who did not stop, and also Verstappen to move ahead of the Ferrari man. Starting from P14, Leclerc benefited from the eliminations of Grosjean, Hulkenberg and Gasly to push up into the top ten before maintaining a solid driving ability throughout the race. Kimi Raikkonen was forced to retire his Ferrari with an engine problem on lap 25.

For the Spanish Grand Prix however, Bottas followed Hamilton home to claim Mercedes AMG Petronas Motorsport's first one-two of the year.

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