Mercedes Sneaks Away With Fourth 1-2 Victory in a Row in Azerbaijan

Illustration for article titled Mercedes Sneaks Away With Fourth 1-2 Victory in a Row in Azerbaijan

The Azerbaijan street circuit is basically made of slow and tight corners. With qualifying showing Mercedes’ true speed, and Ferrari having a completely disappointing qualifying displaying, the race offered little passing, but somehow managed to be a bit on the exciting side regardless.

With Mercedes racer Valtteri Bottas netting pole position, it was up to him to keep teammate Lewis Hamilton at bay going into the first corner. The pair of Mercedes drivers took the start quite well, going wheel to wheel for the 1st three or four corners in a hold-your-breath start that ultimately went to the favor of Bottas.

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Leclerc started the competition on medium compound tires and had stormed up to fourth in the initial ten laps.

Leclerc then ran his starting tires quite late into the race in order to pull off a one-stop strategy with softs at the very end. But Leclerc did end up leading for a while as everyone else pitted. He didn’t have enough time saved to jump over any of the leaders, but do manage to move up past a few spots.

With a few laps to go and several seconds in hand over sixth place, Ferrari did pit Leclerc for a second set of fresh soft tires to give him an unhampered run at the fastest lap of the race, which nets a point in the championship this season. While the points spread from Ferrari to Mercedes is quite large now, that point might make all the difference as the season runs down to its conclusion.

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The Mercedes pair finished about four seconds ahead of Sebastian Vettel. but the Ferrari really never had anything for either of the Mercedes motorists.

In the middle section of the competition, and drivers just set about running laps. In the closing stages however, Lewis Hamilton closed to within another of Bottas, ultimately, it had been Bottas who won the race by simply not putting a wheel wrong. It was a good showing for the Finn.

It was a normal competition in that it was extraordinary for Mercedes to be so quick.

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