Pastor Maldonado drove an excellent race to take the chequered flag at the Spanish Grand Prix in Catalunya.
This win was the first for the Williams team since the 2004 Brazilian grand prix won by Juan Pablo Montoya. Also there was a fire that broke out in the Williams garage in the fuel storage area, while the mechanics were celebrating.
Maldonado is the first driver from Venezuela to win a Grand Prix. Ferrari's Fernando Alonso took second place, 3.1 secs behind the leader after fighting hard in the finishing laps. Alonso had an excellent start, leading the race for the first 27 laps. He was over taken after the first round of stops. The second round of stops offered some hope to the Ferrari driver, who pushed hard for a win but had to be content with second place. Kimi Raikkonnen of Lotus was third. Lotus showed some excellent pace during the practice sessions and Kimi was disappointed after finishing third. After the race he commented "The car did not run when it mattered the most" as the car struggled in the initial stages and only threatened the Ferrari towards the end. Kimi finished only half a second behind Alonso.
Sebastian Vettel finished first at the Bahrain GP this weekend to post the first win for Red Bull this season, with team mate Mark Webber finishing fourth.
The race was without incidents as there were continued protests in the troubled Gulf kingdom. 2007 champion Kimi Raikkonen finished second in his Lotus while teammate Romain Grosjean finished third to earn his first podium finish. Kimi drove an excellent race to get past the highly competitive field to finish second after starting ninth on the grid. Kimi got past Webber, his teammate Grosjean in nicely timed smart moves. Next, he was closely in pursuit of the race leader Vettel who was told to conserve his tires. Both pitted at Lap 40 and then the pace of the Red Bull was too good for the Lotus to get near it eventually ending Kimi's challenge.
After a very disappointing start to the season, Red Bull's fortunes sure have turned.
Sebastian Vettel was visibly relived as he stood at top of the podium while the German national anthem played at the ceremony. Team Manager, Christian Horner, was also elated at the team's first pole position and win of the current season.
Vettel drove a dominate race in the desert island, that it even looked like he pushed his car, the RB8 chassis affectionately named Abbey, to its very limits because no sooner had he taken the win he park it at the end of the Pit Lane. Team mate Mark Webber placed 4th resulting in engine supplier, Renault, having the first four places being won on their RS27 engine.
Lotus also had a great race with both of its drivers completing the podium. "Iceman" Kimi Räikkönen took second tailing Vettel by only 3.3 s. Räikkönen took the position about half-way through the race after his team mate, Romain Grosjean, move over to allow his faster team mate a shot at Vettel. This marks Kimi's first podium since his return from his Rallying stint and Romain's first in Formula One.
Red Bull's Sebastian Vettel shows that even though he did not make Q3 in China, he fights back with an impressive run that gets him his first pole position for this weekend's Bahrain Grand Prix. Vettel drove the perfect lap to snatch the pole from McLaren's Lewis Hamilton, who was only .098 s slower.
The Red Bull of Mark Webber and Hamilton's team mate, Jenson Button, complete the first two rows on the grid. Toro Rosso's Daniel Riccardo will start 6th after a great lap, but Mercedes and China Grand Prix winner, Nico Rosberg, only gets P5 at .4 s behind the leader, Vettel, which could stem from a break lock up going into Turn 10 of the Bahrain International Circuit.
Ferrari and Force India decide to conserve their tyres for the race by not running Fernando Alonso, P9, and Paul di Resta, P10, respectively.
Williams' Pastor Maldonado will be penalized 5 grid places after qualifying 17th and will start 22nd.
Seven- time World Champion, Michael Schumacher, was surprisingly elimination in Q1 due to mechanical problems that prevented him from making any improvements to his time.
After much controversy surrounding the FIA decision to go ahead with the Bahrain Grand Prix, despite pressure to cancel, Friday's free practices went on without incident. The Force India Team chose miss the Second practice on the grounds of "logistical reasons" but the decision could stem from a car carrying Force India Team members was delayed by a petrol bomb (Molotov cocktail) attack.
Paul Hembery, Director Pirelli F1, predicts that tyre degradation will play a key role in race strategy with team opt-ting for the harder grey-striped compound, with a longer tyre life, instead of the yellow softer Option tyres,. The track exhibited its lack of grip when Timo Glock, Marussia, spun out in the first turn, and a couple of drivers like Lotus' Romain Grosjean and Sauber's Sergio Pérez ran wide on Turn 10.