wnol.info May 24 2018

First Formula 1 win 'surreal' for Valtteri Bottas

May 24 2018, 01:30 | Van Peters

"For sure, getting the first win is something special", he said.

"It doesn't mean that I'm not happy if Seb wins". Three-time world champion Lewis Hamilton sadly fell in the fourth place, failing to overtake the veteran and 2007 champion Kimi Raikkonen of Ferrari.

Vettel crossed the line less than one second behind Bottas to extend his lead over Hamilton to 13 points.

"I immediately opened the radio 'tell me about the others, tell me about the others!'", he said.

"The direction he was able to go I wasn't able to go basically and I don't properly understand why".

Mercedes driver Valtteri Bottas of Finland sprays champagne on his own face after winning the Formula One Russian Grand Prix at the "Sochi Autodrom" circuit, in Sochi, Russia, Sunday, April.

He added: "I always knew I could get good results if everything goes right and I always trust in my ability".

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It was his decision to retire in the winter that opened the door for Bottas to move to Mercedes from Williams.

"It took more than 80 races but it was worth it, well worth the learning curve", Bottas said. "Thanks so much to the team and the factory".

"I was slow from [Saturday] so that doesn't really change".

Hamilton passed on warm congratulations to race-winner Bottas, hailing the Finn's victory as an important strike in the constructors' standings as Mercedes retained a one-point lead over Ferrari.

While Mercedes team-mate Valtteri Bottas produced a brilliant performance to secure his maiden F1 win at Sochi, Hamilton struggled with a lack of balance and an overheating auto in fourth place.

Bottas' Mercedes teammate Lewis Hamilton, who qualified fourth, challenged Raikkonen on the way to Turn 1 but was forced to slot in behind him as the field ran through turns 2 and 3. In the Constructors' Championship, Mercedes has the lead with 136 points though Ferrari is a close second with 135 points. Sixth and seventh places went to Force India drivers Sergio Perez and Esteban Ocon, respectively. Alonso has failed to finish any of the opening four races, and the sight of him walking back to the McLaren garage was depressing, not just for the Spaniard and his McLaren team - but for the sport, too. Renault's Nico Hulkenberg, Williams' Felipe Massa and Toro Rosso's Carlos Sainz completed the top 10 drivers chart at the Sochi Auto Drome in Russian Federation.

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