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Australia 2012 Australian Grand Prix
Melbourne120318
Race 1 of 20 in the 2012 Formula One season
Date 18 March 2012
Official name 2012 Formula 1 Qantas Australian Grand Prix
Location Melbourne Grand Prix Circuit

5.303 km (3.295 mi)

Distance 58 laps, 307.574 km (191.12 mi)
Weather Fine

Air Temp 22 °C (72 °F)

Pole Position
Driver United Kingdom Lewis Hamilton (McLaren-Mercedes)
Time 1:24.922
Fastest Lap
Driver United Kingdom Jenson Button (McLaren-Mercedes)
Time 1:29.187 on lap 56
Podium
First United KingdomJenson Button (McLaren-Mercedes)
Second Germany Sebastian Vettel (Red Bull-Renault)
Third United Kingdom Lewis Hamilton (McLaren-Mercedes)

The 2012 Australian Grand Prix (formally, the 2012 Formula 1 Qantas Australian Grand Prix) was a Formula One motor race held on 18 March 2012 as the opening round of the 2012 Formula One season. It was the 77th race in the combined history of the Australian Grand Prix that dates back to the 100 Miles Road Race of 1928, and the 17th time the event has been held at the Melbourne Grand Prix Circuit at Albert Park.

The race, contested over 58 laps, was won by McLaren driver Jenson Button who took his third victory at the Albert Park Circuit. Reigning double World Champion Sebastian Vettel, driving for Red Bull Racing, finished in second place, while polesitter and Button's McLaren teammate Lewis Hamilton completed the podium. Australian Mark Webber was fourth, his best result in his home Grand prix.

ReportEdit

BackgroundEdit


QualifyingEdit


RaceEdit

Button got the better start of the two McLarens leading the pack into turn one. He was followed by Hamilton, Schumacher, Rosberg, Vettel and Grosjean who had dropped three places. Both Senna and Ricciardo collided with each other forcing them to pit and re-join at the back. There was also contact between Webber, Vergne and Hülkenberg, the latter being forced to retire. On lap two Vettel passed Roserg for fourth place, while at turn thirteen Grosjean and Maldonado made contact, the Lotus driver's steering arm becoming snapped, forcing him to retire.

On lap ten Schumacher retired with a greabox problem, after running offside the first turn, this promoted Vettel into third place. The first round of stops began with Massa on lap 14, the Ferrari driver complaining of a loss of grip in his rear tyres. Several other drivers pitted around the same time, foreshadowing a switch to a three-stop strategy. Pérez elected to stay out aiming for a one stop strategy, as he did the previous year. Race leader Button pitted on lap sixteen, breifly giving the lead to Hamilton, who conceded it when he pitted on the next lap, also endind up behind Pérez. Pérez was later overtaken by both Hamilton and Vettel on lap twenty one. On lap twenty four Pérez made his one and only pitstop, dropping him down to thirteenth place.

Due to a steering problem, Petrov retired his Caterham on the start/finish straight beside the pit wall. The position of the car was dangerous so the safety car was deployed on lap thirty seven to allow a truck to recover it. Several drivers took this opportunity to pit, including the two McLaren drivers. During this Vettel managed to take second place from Hamilton. The race resumed on lap forty two. On lap forty six Ferrari driver Massa and Williams driver Senna clashed at turn three, both cars developed punctures, and retired from the race as a result.

On lap fifty eight, the final lap, Maldonado, while attempting to overtake Alonso for fifth place, applied too much throttle too soon while still on the astroturf through the apex of turn seven, ending up in the wall uninjured. Rosberg made contact with Pérez on the approach to the fast chicane at turns 11 and 12, allowing Räikkönen to overtake both of them, Rosberg limped home with a left rear puncture to finish twelfth. Jenson Button went on to win the race, his third at the Albert Park Circuit in four years. Vettel crossed the line second, two seconds behind Button, while Hamilton held Webber off long enough to finish third. Webber crossed the line fourth, his best result at his home Grand Prix.

ClassificationEdit

QualifyingEdit

Pos. No. Driver Constructor Q1 Q2 Q3 Grid
1 4 United Kingdom Lewis Hamilton McLaren-Mercedes 1:26.800 1:25.626 1:24.922 1
2 3 United Kingdom Jenson Button McLaren-Mercedes 1:26.832 1:25.663 1:25.074 2
3 10 France Romain Grosjean Lotus-Renault 1:26.498 1:25.845 1:25.302 3
4 7 Germany Michael Schumacher Mercedes 1:26.586 1:25.571 1:25.336 4
5 2 Australia Mark Webber Red Bull-Renault 1:27.117 1:26.297 1:25.651 5
6 1 Germany Sebastian Vettel Red Bull-Renault 1:26.773 1:25.982 1:25.668 6
7 8 Germany Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1:26.763 1:25.469 1:25.686 7
8 18 Venezuela Pastor Maldonado Williams-Renault 1:26.803 1:26.206 1:25.908 8
9 12 Germany Nico Hülkenberg Force India-Mercedes 1:27.464 1:26.314 1:26.451 9
10 16 Australia Daniel Ricciardo Toro Rosso-Ferrari 1:27.024 1:26.319 no time 10
11 17 France Jean-Éric Vergne Toro Rosso-Ferrari 1:26.493 1:26.429 11
12 5 Spain Fernando Alonso Ferrari 1:26.688 1:26.494 12
13 14 Japan Kamui Kobayashi Sauber-Ferrari 1:26.182 1:26.590 13
14 19 Brazil Bruno Senna Williams-Renault 1:27.004 1:26.663 14
15 11 United Kingdom Paul di Resta Force India-Mercedes 1:27.469 1:27.086 15
16 6 Brazil Felipe Massa Ferrari 1:27.633 1:27.497 16
17 15 Mexico Sergio Pérez Sauber-Ferrari 1:26.596 no time 22 1
18 9 Finland Kimi Räikkönen Lotus-Renault 1:27.758 17
19 20 Finland Heikki Kovalainen Caterham-Renault 1:28.679 18
20 21 Russia Vitaly Petrov Caterham-Renault 1:29.018 19
21 24 Germany Timo Glock Marussia-Cosworth 1:30.923 20
22 25 France Charles Pic Marussia-Cosworth 1:31.670 21
107% time: 1:32.214
22 Spain Pedro de la Rosa HRT-Cosworth 1:33.495 DNQ 2
23 India Narain Karthikeyan HRT-Cosworth 1:33.643 DNQ 2
Notes

RaceEdit

Pos. No. Driver Constructor Laps Time/Retired Grid Points
1 3 United Kingdom Jenson Button McLaren-Mercedes 58 1:34:09.565 2 25
2 1 Germany Sebastian Vettel Red Bull-Renault 58 +2.139 6 18
3 4 United Kingdom Lewis Hamilton McLaren-Mercedes 58 +4.075 1 15
4 2 Australia Mark Webber Red Bull-Renault 58 +4.547 5 12
5 5 Spain Fernando Alonso Ferrari 58 +21.565 12 10
6 14 Japan Kamui Kobayashi Sauber-Ferrari 58 +36.766 13 8
7 9 Finland Kimi Räikkönen Lotus-Renault 58 +38.014 17 6
8 15 Mexico Sergio Pérez Sauber-Ferrari 58 +39.458 22 4
9 16 Australia Daniel Ricciardo Toro Rosso-Ferrari 58 +39.556 10 2
10 11 United Kingdom Paul di Resta Force India-Mercedes 58 +39.737 15 1
11 17 France Jean-Éric Vergne Toro Rosso-Ferrari 58 +39.848 11
12 8 Germany Nico Rosberg Mercedes 58 +57.642 7
13 18 Venezuela Pastor Maldonado Williams-Renault 57 Accident 8
14 24 Germany Timo Glock Marussia-Cosworth 57 +1 Lap 20
15 25 France Charles Pic Marussia-Cosworth 53 Oil pressure 21
16 19 Brazil Bruno Senna Williams-Renault 52 Collision damage 14
Ret 6 Brazil Felipe Massa Ferrari 46 Collision damage 16
Ret 20 Finland Heikki Kovalainen Caterham-Renault 44 Suspension 18
Ret 21 Russia Vitaly Petrov Caterham-Renault 38 Steering 19
Ret 7 Germany Michael Schumacher Mercedes 10 Gearbox 4
Ret 10 France Romain Grosjean Lotus-Renault 1 Collision 3
Ret 12 Germany Nico Hülkenberg Force India-Mercedes 0 Collision damage 9
  • Heikki Kovalainen was given a five-place grid penalty at the next race for overtaking cars on a restart prior to passing the safety car line.

Championship standings after the raceEdit

Drivers' Championship standingsEdit

Pos. Driver Points
1 United Kingdom Jenson Button 25
2 Germany Sebastian Vettel 18
3 United Kingdom Lewis Hamilton 15
4 Australia Mark Webber 12
5 Spain Fernando Alonso 10

Constructors' Championship standingsEdit

Pos. Constructor Points
1 United Kingdom McLaren-Mercedes 40
2 Austria Red Bull-Renault 30
3 Switzerland Sauber-Ferrari 12
4 Italy Ferrari 10
5 United Kingdom Lotus-Renault 6
  • Note: Only the top five positions are included for both sets of standings.

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