The Roar
The Roar

Advertisement

Ferrari, Leclerc win Aus GP, Ricciardo rises to sixth

Autoplay in... 6 (Cancel)
Up Next No more videos! Playlist is empty -
Replay
Cancel
Next
10th April, 2022
1

Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc has led from start to finish to win the Australian Grand Prix.

Leclerc logged his second win in three Formula One races this season with a resounding victory at Melbourne’s Albert Park on Sunday. 

Australia’s Daniel Ricciardo finished sixth in his McLaren while Red Bull’s Sergio Perez took second place and Mercedes’ George Russell was third.

Red Bull’s reigning world champion Max Verstappen failed to finish for the second time this year.

Verstappen was in second place on lap 39 of the 58-lap race when he shut down his chase, pulling over and telling his team radio he was smelling “weird fluid”.

Advertisement

Leclerc finished more than 20 seconds ahead of Perez to claim his fourth career grand prix win – all four have come from pole position.  

“It is the first one (win) where we controlled a little bit the gap and, honestly, what a car today,” he said.

“I did a good job all weekend but it was not possible without the car.

“And this weekend, especially with race pace, we were extremely strong.

Advertisement

“The tyres felt great from the first lap to the last lap … I’m just so happy.”

Leclerc’s triumph follows his season-opening win in Bahrain and a second-placing behind Verstappen in Saudi Arabia.

The pole-sitter started smoothly ahead of Verstappen as Ricciardo held his grid position of seventh in the opening stages.

Advertisement

But the race of Leclerc’s Ferrari teammate Carlos Sainz lasted less than two laps.

The Spaniard, who finished second and third in the opening two races, misjudged a turn and slid across grass and into gravel.

After a safety car was deployed, Leclerc rapidly increased his lead over Verstappen to more than six seconds on lap 14.

Verstappen entered the pits to change tyres on lap 19 and resumed in seventh spot with his Red Bull colleague Perez taking second spot – some 16 seconds behind Leclerc – followed by Mercedes duo Lewis Hamilton and Russell and then Ricciardo.

Advertisement

Two laps later, Perez also pitted and Ricciardo soon followed, sliding from fourth to ninth after his tyre change.

Leclerc changed tyres on lap 22 when 26 seconds in front and resumed with a six-second break from Verstappen before a flashpoint.

Aston Martin’s Sebastian Vettel hit a wall on lap 24, ending his race, and the resultant safety car allowed Verstappen to re-start racing on the rear of Leclerc.

But within 10 laps of the re-start, Leclerc’s Ferrari had pulled away again – he was more than five seconds ahead when Verstappen’s race suddenly ended on lap 39.

Advertisement

The reigning world champion pulled over and shut down his car and his exit left Leclerc with a simple cruise to victory. 

© AAP

close