2014 Bahrain Grand Prix
Most of the Hamilton’s best races have come while he is chasing. But this race is completely the opposite of what you’d expect from him.
Nico Rosberg started the Bahrain GP on pole ahead of Hamilton. However, he didn’t get the best of starts as Hamilton passes him on into the first corner. Rosberg attempted to fight back but Hamilton covered the inside line and gave him no room. Rosberg, then , continued to preserve his fuel in order to attack during the latter stage of the race.
In doing so, he ensured that he remained within 2 seconds of Hamilton. On lap 18, Rosberg was in the DRS range. So he started causing problems for Hamilton as both the Mercedes stayed neck to neck in chicanes. Just before the pitstops, Hamilton went ahead and was given first preference. Hamilton’s Mercedes was now on soft compound tyres while Rosberg’s was on harder medium tyres.
Because of soft tyres being faster, Hamilton was able to build a healthy lead of over 10 seconds on Rosberg. This, didn’t dent Rosberg’s chances as they went on their final stint. Hamilton got the prime tyres and Rosberg has the option tyres. On lap 40, both the Mercedes pitted under the safety car after Esteban Gutiérrez rolled his Sauber. This meant a disadvantage for Hamilton as his lead was completely squashed, while he was on the slower tyres.
Both Mercedes went wheel to wheel, often trading paintjobs and Hamilton was forced to defend. Rosberg braked late into many turns but Hamilton defended well. Mercedes’ executive director Paddy Lowe had to remind them to bring both cars home. Such was the intensity of the battle. Finally in a gripping race, Rosberg was unable to break down Hamilton gritty defence, handing Hamilton his second consecutive win. While Hamilton has himself said that he enjoys chasing , this race proved his mettle to defend in tight situations.