Daniel Ricciardo won an incredible and controversial Baku Grand Prix, with Hamilton being robbed of the win by a faulty head-rest.
Hamilton maintained the lead from pole, but there were fireworks behind. Bottas clipped the kerb at turn 2 and hit Raikkonen, putting them both to the back. Vettel was gifted 2nd place, Perez made his way to 3rd. Ricciardo made an early pit stop and went down to 17th place.
The carnage then began. We had 2 safety cars within 1 lap of eachother, with Verstappen also sadly out of the race. The second safety car provided a race-defining moment. Hamilton was backing up the pack and Vettel went into the back of him. Enraged by his thought that Hamilton brake-checked him, Vettel purposely hit Hamilton, descending social media into chaos.
Vettel barely managed to hold onto P2 at the restart, but he was saved by a third safety car due to debris on track. At the restart of the second safety car, the Force Indias of Perez and Ocon collided, putting them both at the back. Because of the debris on track, a red flag was deployed. Somehow, Perez and Raikkonen did restart the race despite the Ferrari looking impossible to get going again.
Hamilton retained the lead, and extended a gap over Vettel. Ricciardo made a daring pass up the inside of the two Williams, making it stick and onto the podium places. Hulkenburg clipped the inside wall, destroying his wheel base and was out of the race. Massa followed him out of the race, but the real drama then began. Hamilton had a head-rest issue, meaning he was forced to come into the pits to change it, robbed of the lead.
The very next lap, Vettel was given a 10 second stop-go penalty for his collision with Hamilton, which he then served but came out ahead of Hamilton. Ricciardo was promoted to the lead, Stroll 2nd and Magnussen 3rd. Ocon was 4th and Bottas, despite being last at one stage, had recovered to 5th. Vettel and Hamilton were 8th and 9th.
Bottas, Vettel and Hamilton all swept around Alonso as he began to go backwards. They all then passed Ocon and Magnussen. Incredibly, Bottas was now on the podium and began to chase down Stroll, with Vettel and Hamilton close behind.
On the very last straight, Bottas slipstreamed passed Stroll, robbing the Canadian of P2. Ricciardo came across the line to win the race, a superb race of attrition. Vettel came home in 4th, while a furious Hamilton came 5th, clearly robbed of a race win. Raikkonen and Perez failed to finish the race near the end. Ocon, Magnussen, Sainz, Alonso and Wehrlein rounded out the points.
- Raikkonen (DNF)
- Perez (DNF)
- Massa (DNF)
- Hulkenburg (DNF)
- Verstappen (DNF)
- Kvyat (DNF)
- Palmer (DNF)
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