Vettel takes 50th win and F1 championship lead in Canada

Vettel takes 50th win and F1 championship lead in Canada

Lewis Hamilton was left to rue a Mercedes engine problem after he lost the lead of the Formula One championship to Sebastian Vettel in Canada on Sunday.

Brazilian soccer great Pele famously reacted too late when Ferrari's Michael Schumacher won at Sao Paulo's Interlagos circuit in 2002, brandishing the flag instead as the later finishers appeared.

With Red Bull also pushing the world champions, and finishing with two cars ahead of Hamilton, Wolff says the race-by-race battle is going to be determined by fine margins.

In the final five laps, Hamilton pushed Ricciardo hard in the battle for fourth but the Australian - victor at Monaco last time out - just held on with the four-time world champion forced to relinquish his standings lead as he recorded his lowest placing of the season.

"Like every Grand Prix, there's no one person to dedicate it to", said Vettel. "Forty years after Gilles won his Grand Prix here, it's nice to show Ferrari is still alive".

"I'm just so happy because all of a sudden at the start I was down on power".

The third and only other retirement was a gutted Ferdinand Alonso when the McLaren driver had to take his vehicle back to the box in his 300th grand prix race after racing so very well. It's Vettel's fourth pole on the Ile Notre-Dame, and his first since 2013.

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Stroll, 19, was in is second Canadian GP.

Hamilton retains a slim lead over Vettel in driver standings and will likely challenge the German when racing begins in earnest. Six cars can win races and you can't take anything for granted. I was anxious. I told them on the last lap so that people don't jump on the track, waving flags and celebrating, because we're still going at full pace.

Mercedes were never in the victory equation, having not got engine updates ready in time for the race while Ferrari and Red Bull both had new parts. Mercedes, Ferrari and Red Bull have dominated the field this season.

Red Bull's Ricciardo was denied the fastest lap by the early flag waving which meant that did not count. "We've seen this year it's very close between the three teams and the six drivers so we'll see, but for sure if you start on pole you want to win".

After falling behind Ricciardo during those stops, Hamilton was then vulnerable to Kimi Raikkonen's Ferrari also getting ahead of him when the Finn stopped much later in the race, but he hung on to fifth place as Raikkonen emerged from the pits just behind him at Turn 2.

After 42 laps, sadly, Fernando Alonso's 300th Grand Prix weekend came to an end when, chasing 10th, he was called in to pit and retire.

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