The Scuderia Ferrari driver got off to a mega start as he flew up the ranks to take P3, having started the race in P11! The 4-time World Champion has suffered a terrible season all year; however, that start was characteristic of a true champion.
The Tifosi would have certainly been screaming their lungs out after Sebastian Vettel overtook Lewis Hamilton, who ran wide. However, that wasn’t even half of the story on the opening lap. There was plenty of action unfolding throughout the pack.
Red Bull’s Max Verstappen got off to a horrid start from P2. The Dutchman seemed to be stuck in first gear as a bunch of cars passed him going into Turn 1.
Nevertheless, Verstappen managed to sort his gearbox issue pretty quickly and hung on to P4. Meanwhile, Mercedes who have been having quite the season are having a nightmare at the moment.
In all honesty, both Mercedes cars got off to a rather good start, but Valtteri Bottas had a massive spin going into Turn 1 that put him at the very back of the grid right from the get-go.
As for Lewis Hamilton, who has looked far from the all-conquering machine in Turkey so far, also struggled on the opening lap despite being in P3 for a few seconds. He seemed to be struggling big time and was passed by Vettel, Verstappen, and then Alex Albon.
Another person who spun off at Turn 1 was Renault’s Esteban Ocon. He was bumped by Hamilton and dropped to dead last on the grid.
As for pole-sitter Lance Stroll and his Racing Point teammate Sergio Perez, they both got off to an excellent start, sitting in P1 and P2 at the end of the opening lap.
Istanbul Park promised plenty of entertainment for the fans. And so far, everyone can agree that this track has lived up to the hype, and then some.
As the track starts to dry out, it’ll be interesting to see how the remainder of the race pans out.