Abu Dhabi Grand Prix 2011: Hamilton wins as Vettel retires

Lewis Hamilton took advantage of a rare retirement from Sebastian Vettel to seal his first win since July

The Sport Review staff
By The Sport Review staff

McLaren’s Lewis Hamilton sealed his first victory since July as he took advantage of world champion Sebastian Vettel’s retirement to win the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.

sebastian vettel

Winner: Lewis Hamilton produced a faultless drive to seal his third victory of the season

Red Bull driver Vettel suffered a puncture early in the first lap, forcing him to throw in the towel for the fist time in 20 races – and Hamilton produced a superb drive to make the most of a rare retirement from the German.

sebastian vettel

Hamilton was in brilliant form at the penultimate race of the season

Hamilton’s triumph was his first since the German Grand Prix in July, with Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso taking second and McLaren’s Jenson Button finishing third. Mark Webber of Red Bull took fourth at the Yas Marina circuit.

sebastian vettel

Hamilton did well to hold of the challenge of Fernando Alonso at the Yas Marina circuit

“I feel fantastic,” said Hamilton, who held off the challenge of Ferrari’s Alonso. “It’s one of my best races. I said that to myself as I slowed down.

“Being able to hold one of best drivers in the world [Fernando Alonso] is something that is tough to do. I was looking after tyres and managing the gap. The team did a great job with the stops.

“It’s my mum’s birthday this weekend. It’s great to be able to win while she is here.”

sebastian vettel

Spectator: Sebastian Vettel was forced to watch the rest of the race with the Red Bull team after retiring on the first lap

Vettel admitted having to watch the race after retiring early on was “tough”. He said: “At the exit of the first corner everything seemed fine but when I turned in I tried to catch the car but I couldn’t do it any more and I spun off. On the way back I damaged the suspension so badly.

“I don’t know what happened. We lost pressure all of a sudden out of the exit of Turn One. I don’t why. There is nothing that I did differently to any of the others laps. We need to find out why, maybe I cut the kerb at a funny angle.

“It is tough, but I used the opportunity to learn a bit on the pit wall.”

Abu Dhabi Grand Prix 2011 – Race result

1 Lewis Hamilton (Gbr) McLaren 1hr 37mins 11.886secs

2 Fernando Alonso (Spa) Ferrari 1:37:20.343

3 Jenson Button (Gbr) McLaren 1:37:37.767

4 Mark Webber (Aus) Red Bull 1:37:47.670

5 Felipe Massa (Bra) Ferrari 1:38:02.464

6 Nico Rosberg (Ger) Mercedes GP 1:38:04.203

7 Michael Schumacher (Ger) Mercedes GP 1:38:27.850

8 Adrian Sutil (Ger) Force India 1:38:29.008

9 Paul di Resta (Gbr) Force India 1:38:52.973

10 Kamui Kobayashi (Jpn) Sauber-Ferrari at 1 Lap

11 Sergio Perez (Mex) Sauber-Ferrari at 1 Lap

12 Rubens Barrichello (Bra) Williams at 1 Lap

13 Vitaly Petrov (Rus) Renault at 1 Lap

14 Pastor Maldonado (Ven) Williams at 1 Lap

15 Jaime Alguersuari (Spa) Scuderia Toro Rosso at 1 Lap

16 Bruno Senna (Bra) Renault at 1 Lap

17 Heikki Kovalainen (Fin) Lotus F1 at 1 Lap

18 Jarno Trulli (Ita) Lotus F1 at 2 Laps

19 Timo Glock (Ger) Virgin Racing at 2 Laps

20 Vitantonio Liuzzi (Ita) HRT-F1 at 2 Laps

Not classified:

21 Daniel Ricciardo (Aus) HRT-F1 48 Laps completed

22 Sebastien Buemi (Swi) Scuderia Toro Rosso 19 Laps completed

23 Jerome d’Ambrosio (Bel) Virgin Racing 18 Laps completed

24 Sebastian Vettel (Ger) Red Bull 1 Lap completed

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