Bridgestone Motorsport’s Chinese Grand Prix report


Lewis Hamilton (Vodafone McLaren Mercedes) has won the seventeenth and penultimate round of the FIA Formula One World Championship from pole position after using a hard-hard-medium tyre strategy in the Chinese Grand Prix at Shanghai. Hamilton led the race, except for during his first pit stop, and finished 14.9 seconds ahead of Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro driver Felipe Massa, who overtook his team-mate Kimi Raikkonen six laps from the end of the race. Massa used a medium-medium-hard strategy, whilst Raikkonen finished third with a medium-hard-medium strategy. Fernando Alonso (ING Renault F1 Team) finished fourth, ahead of BMW Sauber F1 Team drivers Nick Heidfeld and Robert Kubica.   Timo Glock (Panasonic Racing Team) used a one stop strategy, hard-medium, to finish seventh, whilst Nelson Piquet (ING Renault F1 Team) finished eighth and scored the final championship point. The fastest lap of the race, a 1min 36.325secs, was set by Hamilton on lap 13 using the hard compound. Leaving Shanghai, Hamilton continues to lead the drivers’ championship with 94 points. Massa has 87 points, so can still also win the drivers’ championship. Kubica is third on 75 points and out of championship contention. Scuderia Ferrari Marlboro continue to lead the constructors’ championship with 156 points, ahead of the Vodafone McLaren Mercedes Team on 145. Both of these teams can still win this championship. The BMW Sauber F1 Team are in third position with 135 points. Bridgestone’s Potenza Formula One tyres will next be in action at the season-ending Brazilian Grand Prix, October 31 – November 2, where the medium and soft compounds will be used. This is a change from the soft and super soft compound allocation for this race last season. Hirohide Hamashima – Bridgestone Director of Motorsport Tyre Development, said: “Congratulations to Lewis Hamilton, this is a fantastic result for him, considering what happened here last season. Both of our compounds worked well today and we saw a good range of strategies, with all three drivers on the podium using the compounds in a different order. Heikki Kovalainen suffered a puncture bnr_ms which led to his tyre carcass braking up and we are investigating the cause of this. We now head to Brazil with both championships still alive, so we should expect a very exciting weekend in Sao Paulo.”

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