Like a Kangaroo: Ferrari Wins First Australian GP

The Australian Grand Prix opened the Formula 1 season in the best possible way for Ferrari, with a suprising victory for Sebastian Vettel.

It was a Red triumph in the first Grand Prix of the 2018 Formula 1 Championship in Australia. The Melbourne circuit opened the season in the best possible way for Ferrari, with a surprising victory for Sebastian Vettel and a good third position for Kimi Raikkonen.

Luck and skill

Luck, cleverness, tactic: these have been the Italian racing team’s trump cards to defeat the Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton, reigning Formula 1 world champion and odds-on favorite to win again. Hamilton started the race in pole position and seemed to be able to handle his edge over Ferrari’s Raikkonen and Vettel, respectively second and third in the grid. However, something unexpected happened: on lap 25, the Haas car driven by Romain Grosjean stopped in the middle of the race track, due to a mistake by the mechanics into the pits. Thus, the Virtual Safety Car forced all the drivers to slow down.

While Lewis Hamilton and Kimi Raikkonen already made their pit stops, Sebastian Vettel did not yet, so he took the advantage to have the Safety Car still around to take his break and re-enter the track into the lead. Indeed, a little surgical acceleration and the great technical skills of the Ferrari mechanics were crucial to see Vettel getting back on the track just few hundredths of a second ahead of Lewis Hamilton’s Mercedes. What appeared to be a boring race, on a circuit where overtakings are usually rare and difficult, became an exciting head-to-head between the German and the Englishman.

Vettel’s Australian triumph

Vettel’s excellent abilities and the nice grip of his Ferrari car allowed him to be in complete control until the end, frustrating the efforts of a good Hamilton, more eager than ever to take back the lead. Surely, without the great help of Haas and the Virtual Safety Car, the tables would have been probably turned. Nonetheless, the renowned Italian cunning and the experience of the Ferrari team facilitated the Australian triumph. This is only the beginning, but the progress and competitiveness showed by Kimi Raikkonen, give Ferrari reason to hope for a great season, where the gap with Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes could be finally narrowed.

Good feelings for the future

In the interview after the race, Sebastian Vettel answered to the journalists who belittled his merits: ‘Fortune? Maybe a little bit, but our team worked so good and we did have the best strategy. We take another win to Maranello (home of Ferrari) and we want more. This car gives us good feelings and motivations for the next weeks.’

What else to say? The second 2018 Formula 1 GP will be held on April 8 in Bahrein and will give us clearer answers about the real values of the new cars. What is certain is that there will be an amazing neck and neck between Mercedes and Ferrari. Just out of curiosity, the name chosen by Sebastian Vettel for his new Ferrari is ‘Loria’. In Italian, if you add the letter ‘G’ ahead, it becomes ‘Gloria‘, namely ‘Glory’. Is it just a word game or a twist of fate?