Brazilian Grand Prix: Sebastian Vettel wins, Lewis Hamilton comes through field to fourth

Formula 1
Sebastian Vettel celebrates victory at Interlagos
Sebastian Vettel celebrates victory at Interlagos

Sebastian Vettel won the Brazilian Grand Prix, with Lewis Hamilton coming through the field to fourth after starting from the pitlane.

Brazilian Grand Prix top three

  1. Sebastian Vettel, Ferrari
  2. Valtteri Bottas, Mercedes
  3. Kimi Raikkonen, Ferrari

Scroll down for full race result

Brazilian Grand Prix: In brief

Lewis Hamilton delivered a world champion's fightback from last to fourth in Sunday's Brazilian Grand Prix.

Sebastian Vettel won for the first time since the summer break after he edged past pole-sitter Valtteri Bottas with a gutsy move at the opening corner.

But it was Hamilton's sensational canter through the field which stole the show at the penultimate round of his title-winning year.

The Briton, who even led the race at one stage, took the chequered flag just 0.8 seconds adrift of third-placed Kimi Raikkonen.

Brazilian Grand Prix: Betting update

Sebastian Vettel is 100/30 second favourite for next season's title after his victory in Brazil, with fellow four-time champion Lewis Hamilton still out in front at 6/4. Max Verstappen is 7/2, and Daniel Ricciardo 7/1. Kimi Raikkonen is still out at 33/1 despite a third consecutive podium finish.

The Hamilton-Vettel straight forecast is 6/1, while it's 10/11 for next year's title to go down to the final race. Vettel is 500/1 to win every race next season...

Brazilian Grand Prix: Full race report

Lewis Hamilton delivered a world champion's fightback from last to fourth in Sunday's Brazilian Grand Prix.

Sebastian Vettel won for the first time since the summer break after he edged past pole-sitter Valtteri Bottas with a gutsy move at the opening corner.

But it was Hamilton's sensational canter through the field which stole the show at the penultimate round of his title-winning year.

The Briton, who even led the race at one stage, took the chequered flag just 0.8 seconds adrift of third-placed Kimi Raikkonen.

The 32-year-old Englishman started from the pit lane after his first competitive return to action since winning the championship in Mexico two weeks ago lasted less than two minutes when he crashed out of qualifying on Saturday.

Hamilton's Mercedes team took advantage of his pit-lane start to strap on a new engine, and Hamilton took advantage of a chaotic first lap to progress six places in the opening exchanges.

Daniel Ricciardo, Stoffel Vandoorne and Kevin Magnussen were involved in a three-way tangle at the second corner with the latter at fault for barging into Vandoorne, who in turn thudded into the side of Ricciardo's Red Bull. Moments later Romain Grosjean and Esteban Ocon collided at turn six and the safety car was deployed.

Vandoorne, Magnussen and Ocon were all unable to continue, marking the first time in Ocon's 27-race career that he had failed to reach the end of a grand prix.

The safety car pitted on lap five with Vettel leading from Bottas, Raikkonen and Max Verstappen. All eyes turned to Hamilton as he began to pick off his opponents one-by-one. His overtaking spot of choice was the left-handed first corner and after only nine laps he was up to 10th and in the points. The Briton was ninth by lap 10, which soon became eighth.

Force India's Sergio Perez provided Hamilton's first real test, but as the Mexican swooped to protect the inside line at the so-called 'Senna S' - named after Hamilton's boyhood hero Ayrton Senna - the Brit swept round the outside in a perfectly executed move. Next up was Fernando Alonso, who Hamilton dispatched on lap 20 following a late lunge at the first turn. Home favourite Felipe Massa became his next victim just three corners later.

Vettel, Bottas, Raikkonen and Verstappen all stopped for fresh rubber, promoting Hamilton to the lead of the race on lap 31. The Englishman eventually made his one-and-only stop 12 laps later, and left the pits in fifth place. "We are chasing a podium," was the message to the newly-crowned four-time world champion.

Hamilton began to light up the time sheets, posting fastest lap after fastest lap, and with 14 remaining he had caught the back of Verstappen's Red Bull. Hamilton, on the speedier supersoft tyre, sailed past the Dutchman at turn four, for fourth.

Remarkably, he was now less than 10 seconds behind leader Vettel, with Raikkonen five seconds up the road in the battle for third. Hamilton had the Finn in his sights, but his charge ran out of steam and he fell just short of capping a remarkable drive by passing the Ferrari driver for the final spot on the podium.

Vettel's victory - his first since July's Hungarian Grand Prix - all but ends the race for second place in the championship as he moved 22 points clear of Bottas with just the season finale in Abu Dhabi to come later this month.

Felipe Massa bids farewell after his final home Grand Prix
Felipe Massa bids farewell after his final home Grand Prix

Meanwhile, Ricciardo fought back to finish sixth ahead of an emotional Massa, in his final home race, with Alonso eighth for McLaren.

"I had a chance to squeeze down the inside of Valtteri at the start and I think I surprised him a bit," said Vettel. "I am really happy for everyone at the team. It has been a tough couple of weeks, but it is nice to have both cars up here on the podium.

"There was no room for mistakes. I am sure we will have a drink here to celebrate and then we will see what happens."

Bottas added: "I didn't want to be in sandwich today. We started from pole so our goal was to win the race. It is very disappointing, I tried to put pressure on Sebastian, but it did not lead to anything more. Lewis did a great comeback and he got plenty of points for the team."

Lewis Hamilton told Sky Sports after the race: "I messed up yesterday and put myself in the worst possible position

"I was quick enough to win the race from pole to the flag and I didn't do that so I made the job a lot harder.

"Waking up this morning my goal was just to redeem myself after yesterday's mistake, do the team proud and get the points back. I tried to get third, but I just ran out of tyres in the end.

"But I enjoyed the race and I enjoyed the battle. That continues to show me, but also to everyone else, that I still have a lot of fire in my heart. I'm still young at heart and there's still many, many more races to go. To get back to fourth, I have to be very grateful and be happy with that."

Brazilian Grand Prix: Full race result

  1. Sebastian Vettel (Ger) Ferrari 1hr 31mins 26.260secs
  2. Valtteri Bottas (Fin) Mercedes GP 1:31:29.022
  3. Kimi Raikkonen (Fin) Ferrari 1:31:30.860
  4. Lewis Hamilton (Gbr) Mercedes GP 1:31:31.728
  5. Max Verstappen (Ned) Red Bull 1:31:59.200
  6. Daniel Ricciardo (Aus) Red Bull 1:32:14.951
  7. Felipe Massa (Bra) Williams 1:32:35.142
  8. Fernando Alonso (Spa) McLaren 1:32:35.623
  9. Sergio Perez (Mex) Force India 1:32:35.760
  10. Nico Hulkenberg (Ger) Renault at 1 Lap
  11. Carlos Sainz (Spa) Renault at 1 Lap
  12. Pierre Gasly (Fra) Scuderia Toro Rosso at 1 Lap
  13. Marcus Ericsson (Swe) Sauber-Ferrari at 1 Lap
  14. Pascal Wehrlein (Ger) Sauber-Ferrari at 1 Lap
  15. Romain Grosjean (Fra) Haas F1 at 2 Laps
  16. Lance Stroll (Can) Williams at 2 Laps

Not Classified:
17 Brendon Hartley (Nzl) Scuderia Toro Rosso 40 Laps completed
18 Esteban Ocon (Fra) Force India 0 Laps completed
19 Kevin Magnussen (Den) Haas F1 0 Laps completed
20 Stoffel Vandoorne (Bel) McLaren 0 Laps completed

Fastest Lap: Max Verstappen 1min 11.044secs on Lap 64

Updated Drivers' Standings

  1. Lewis Hamilton (Gbr) Mercedes GP 345pts
  2. Sebastian Vettel (Ger) Ferrari 302
  3. Valtteri Bottas (Fin) Mercedes GP 280
  4. Daniel Ricciardo (Aus) Red Bull 200
  5. Kimi Raikkonen (Fin) Ferrari 193
  6. Max Verstappen (Ned) Red Bull 158
  7. Sergio Perez (Mex) Force India 94
  8. Esteban Ocon (Fra) Force India 83
  9. Carlos Sainz (Spa) Renault 54
  10. Felipe Massa (Bra) Williams 42
  11. Lance Stroll (Can) Williams 40
  12. Nico Hulkenberg (Ger) Renault 35
  13. Romain Grosjean (Fra) Haas F1 28
  14. Kevin Magnussen (Den) Haas F1 19
  15. Fernando Alonso (Spa) McLaren 15
  16. Stoffel Vandoorne (Bel) McLaren 13
  17. Jolyon Palmer (Gbr) Renault 8
  18. Pascal Wehrlein (Ger) Sauber-Ferrari 5
  19. Daniil Kvyat (Rus) Scuderia Toro Rosso 5
  20. Marcus Ericsson (Swe) Sauber-Ferrari 0
  21. Pierre Gasly (Fra) Scuderia Toro Rosso 0
  22. Antonio Giovinazzi (Ita) Haas F1 0
  23. Brendon Hartley (Nzl) Scuderia Toro Rosso 0
  24. Jenson Button (Gbr) McLaren 0
  25. Paul di Resta (Gbr) Williams 0

Updated Constructors' Standings

  1. Mercedes GP 625pts
  2. Ferrari 495
  3. Red Bull 358
  4. Force India 177
  5. Williams 82
  6. Scuderia Toro Rosso 53
  7. Renault 49
  8. Haas F1 47
  9. McLaren 28
  10. Sauber-Ferrari 5

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