Bahrain seems to favour the methodical drivers and punish the passionate ones. As Lewis Hamilton can attest to. Not only is he being outshone by team mate Nico Rosberg on the starts but he seems to have a bit of a target painted on his car this year.

F1 Bahrain 2016a

However the real misfortune in this Grand Prix fell on sebastian Vettel before the race had even begun as his turbo gave out at the start of the parade lap ahead of the starting grid. Ferrari still showed pace in the race with Kimi Raikkonen continuing his good fortune in Bahrain coming in second to the dominant Nico Rosberg. However that just leave conversations open to what might have been should Vettel have remained in the race after showing very convincing times in practice and qualifying.

F1 Bahrain 2016c

This brings us back to Hamilton, who drove an incredible race considering his setbacks. Once again he seemed to struggle with the start wich left him open to attack from the Williams of Valtteri Bottas. Literally as it turned out when Hamilton cut across to tackle the first corner and Bottas hid his side pod littering the track with debris and leaving Hamilton with a serious aero disadvantage for most of the remainder of the race.

Later it was revealed that the team left Hamilton out  longer than they normally would with front wing damage as they were gambling on a safety car that never came after the first corner shunt.

F1 Bahrain 2016b

Despite all this Hamilton still managed to wrangle third on the day bringing more points Mercedies way and opening the gap to Ferrari who have only brought home one car in both opening races respectively.

The really impressive racing however, as is the current state of F1, was all happening mid field with battles between Torro Rosso, Red Bull and F1 newcomers Haas Racing. Has proving that Melbourne wasn’t a fluke with Grosjean coming in fifth behind Daniel Ricciardo’s Red Bull.

Even Mclaren had some points come their war with stand in driver Stoffel Vandoorne taking home 10th place in his F1 debut.

F1 Bahrain 2016d

As the championship starts to take some shape it is obvious that Mercedes are still the team to beat, but the real question is, will Ferrari find the consistency in reliability to truly take the fight to the current world champions? Well we still have nineteen races to find out.

 

Driver Championship Points

POSITIONDRIVERTEAMPOINTS
1Nico RosbergMercedes AMG Petronas F1 Team50
2Lewis HamiltonMercedes AMG Petronas F1 Team33
3Daniel RicciardoRed Bull Racing24
4Romain GrosjeanHaas F1 Team18
5Kimi RaikkonenScuderia Ferrari18
6Sebastian VettelScuderia Ferrari15
7Felipe MassaWilliams Martini Racing14
8Max VerstappenScuderia Toro Rosso9
9Nico HulkenbergSahara Force India6
10Valtteri BottasWilliams Martini Racing6
11Daniil KvyatRed Bull Racing6
12Carlos SainzScuderia Toro Rosso2
13Stoffel VandoorneMcLaren-Honda1
14Jenson ButtonMcLaren-Honda0

Images: Crash.net

-Roger Baillie (@RustyRoj)

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Brought up in a world of Mini's, road trips, rallying and tinkering it is unsurprising that among my passions, since I can remember, cars have been something very special to me. The way they look, the way they smell and especially the way the sound.This passion has grown over the years from a spectator's seat at Formula 1 and WRC events to active participation in events such as the Cannonball Run NZ and Stance Off Events. My current love affair is with a slightly tuned Mk4 Golf GTI which brings me nothing but joy on the road.This love for driving and cars has led me start a Podcast dedicated to my love of driving called Drive Life NZ where I hope to share my story while exploring the varied stories of other enthusiasts. Dispelling the myths surrounding car people and celebrating our diversity.

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