Nico Rosberg won today’s Brazilian Grand Prix ahead of Lewis Hamilton and Sebastien Vettel, after fending off a tough challenge from his teammate at multiple stages of the race.
After Rosberg managed to get a good start and lead into turn one, the triple world champion made use of the three-stop race strategy to challenge his teammate for the lead, notably in the second stint when he got within a second of him before complaining that the circuit is “impossible to follow” other drivers on and requested a different strategy.
The team felt that it would’ve been slower to convert to a two-stop however, which meant the next opportunity would have to be during the second pitstop phase. Hamilton was not close enough that time though, and on the third occasion it was a repeat of his first attempt as he struggled to get closer and make a move.
Also struggling to make moves was Max Verstappen, who after pitting early along with Romain Grosjean and Sergio Perez, was finding overtaking the Force India driver for the final points position difficult. He eventually made the move into turn one though, using every inch of the track on the exit of turn two to effect Perez’s momentum, which allowed Grosjean through and demoted him to 12th place.
Verstappen later pitted for the final time and found himself behind Pastor Maldonado who was on a two-stop strategy, for the final points position. He made swift work of the overtake this time in the closing stages, securing his 10th place and with it 1 point.
Further on in the race, it looked like Vettel was going to be a catalyst in the battle between the leaders after pitting for the Soft tyre in his middle stint. Traffic however proved to be a problem with his progression, despite matching and going quicker on occasion, than race leader Rosberg.
Elsewhere an on-track battle between Hulkenberg and Kvyat broke out. The Red Bull driver saved his Medium set of tyres in the first parts of the stint, but traffic also stopped him from being able to pose a real threat to the Force India driver, who was looking for a sixth place finish in order to secure the teams fifth place in the constructors championship.
Homeboy Felipe Nasr meanwhile was having an afternoon to forget in the Sauber. Despite the two-stop strategy getting him into the points, much like Maldonado he dropped back with limited tyre life, eventually all the way down to P14, despite putting up an impressive defensive battle at times.
Fellow compatriot Felipe Massa finished in eighth place on a three-stop strategy, whilst teammate Valterri Bottas finished fifth and secured their third place in the constructors championship.
But it was Nico Rosberg who took the spoils, winning his second consecutive race and securing second place in the drivers championship.