Valtteri Bottas best, Lewis Hamilton hit by time penalties
Valtteri Bottas won the Russian Grand Prix for Mercedes on Sunday after teammate and championship leader Lewis Hamilton collected two time penalties for infringements before the race had even started.
Hamilton, who started on pole position in Sochi hoping for a 91st Formula One victory to equal Ferrari great Michael Schumacher’s all-time record, finished third behind Red Bull’s Max Verstappen.
The Briton’s lead over Bottas shrunk to a still healthy 44 points after 10 of 17 races, with the Finn collecting a bonus point for fastest lap.
“Never give up. It’s a good day,” said Bottas, who addressed his critics in more basic terms over the team radio as he took the chequered flag.
“It’s nice to get a win, it’s been a while and I need to try and keep the momentum... there’s still quite a few races to go, so you never know.”
The win was the Finn’s second of the season, and first since the Austrian opener in July.Hamilton’s hopes were dashed when stewards issued two five-second penalties for making practice starts outside the designated area as he headed to the grid.
Hamilton accused F1 stewards of trying to stop him winning. The Mercedes driver finished third after starting on pole position. “I need to go back and see what the rules are and what exactly I did wrong,” he said.the Briton told Sky Sports television.
“I’m pretty sure no-one’s got two five-second penalties for something so ridiculous before,” he added.