Turkish GP: Felipe Massa leads Ferrari one-two 

Written by David on August 26th, 2007 at 6:28 pmLast Update: August 26th, 2007 at 6:45 pm

Felipe Massa Turkish Grand Prix 2007 Istanbul Park winnerFelipe Massa resisted a long pressure during the race from Kimi Raikkonen to lead a Ferrari one-two in the Turkish Grand Prix, on a day when championship leader Lewis Hamilton could only finish fifth after suffering a puncture. Hamilton had been on course for third, close behind the Ferraris, until his right-front tyre failed shortly before his second pitstop.

The consequent delay dropped him behind his McLaren teammate Fernando Alonso – who had lost ground with a poor start – and BMW’s Nick Heidfeld. Neither McLaren got away well at the start of the race, with Hamilton immediately losing second to Raikkonen and Alonso dropping to sixth behind the two BMWs. Although the world champion managed to re-pass both Robert Kubica and Heidfeld during the first pit sequence, Alonso had already fallen 14 seconds adrift of the leaders by this time. He proceeded to match Hamilton’s pace, but could not gain any ground and would not have bettered fourth place if his teammate’s race had run trouble-free.

The Ferraris ran in very close company throughout the race, with Raikkonen often appearing to have more pace than Massa. But the Finn stopped one lap earlier at each pit top, and the additional lap on low fuel made all the difference, as Massa managed to stay ahead of Raikkonen at both stops. The closest they came to a change of position was when Massa locked up and ran wide into the final complex as Raikkonen put him under heavy pressure just before the final stops, but the Brazilian was able to regain his momentum before Raikkonen could pounce. Having emerged behind Massa again after his last stop, Raikkonen then backed off in the closing stages, before proving a point by setting the fastest lap with two laps to go. It was to no avail, as Massa repeated his 2006 Istanbul victory with a 2.2 second winning margin.

Hamilton closed in on the Ferraris by running longer in his first stint, and was set to do likewise at the second stops. But the puncture cost him two places, and with the flailing rubber having damaged the McLaren’s front wing, all Hamilton could do was nurse the car home in fifth behind Alonso and Heidfeld. The result brings Alonso to within five points of Hamilton in the standings, with Massa still 17 points behind.

Renault’s Heikki Kovalainen drove a strong race to sixth place, and even led briefly thanks to a late first pitstop. He closed in on Hamilton in the final laps, but could not get near enough to try a pass.

Kubica’s strategy of making early pitstops cost the BMW driver dear, as he fell behind Alonso, Heidfeld and Kovalainen in the first sequence, and then lost out to Williams’ Nico Rosberg at the final stops. He chased the Williams to the flag, but Rosberg managed to fend him off and secure seventh.

Giancarlo Fisichella tapped Jarno Trulli into a spin at the first corner of the race and then lost time avoiding the rotating Toyota. He recovered to ninth, ahead of David Coulthard. Mark Webber was running in company with his Red Bull teammate early on, before suffering another hydraulic failure.

The delayed Trulli could only make it back up to 16th, while his teammate Ralf Schumacher came through from 17th on the grid to 12th, behind Alex Wurz.

Jenson Button made better progress than his Honda teammate and back row partner Rubens Barrichello, as they finished 13th and 16th respectively, split by Vitantonio Liuzzi and Anthony Davidson.

Liuzzi had run as high as ninth after a fine start and by avoiding the first corner incident but later fell back, while Davidson lost ground off the line and could not turn his superb qualifying result into a top ten finish.

source: autosport

Turkish Grand Prix Final (Race) Standings:

  1. Massa Ferrari
  2. Raikkonen Ferrari
  3. Alonso McLaren-Mercedes
  4. Heidfeld BMW Sauber
  5. Hamilton McLaren-Mercedes
  6. Kovalainen Renault
  7. Rosberg Williams-Toyota
  8. Kubica BMW Sauber
  9. Fisichella Renault
  10. Coulthard Red Bull-Renault
  11. Wurz Williams-Toyota
  12. R.Schumacher  Toyota
  13. Button Honda
  14. Davidson Super Aguri-Honda
  15. Liuzzi Toro Rosso-Ferrari
  16. Trulli Toyota
  17. Barrichello Honda
  18. Sato Super Aguri-Honda
  19. Vettel Toro Rosso-Ferrari
  20. Yamamoto Spyker-Ferrari
  21. Sutil Spyker-Ferrari

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