27/03/11 - 07:00
Australian Grand Prix
Albert Park • Race


Follow the Australian Grand Prix live with Eurosport. The race starts at 07:00 on 27 March 2011. Find race results, standings, stats, scores and track info. Keep up with the top F1 drivers and teams including Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes), Valteri Bottas (Mercedes) and Max Verstappen (Red Bull Racing).
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Thank you for joining us for today's season-opener Down Under. Stay with us for all the latest F1 news, now also provided, in part, by AutoSport.


Petrov believes his third-place finish is an indication of what the 2011 Renault is capable of - though admits he was not sure quite how good the car was before the race.


Vettel all smiles on the top step of the podium for the German national anthem. Hamilton and Petrov can also be pleased with an excellent start to the season.


Glock is unclassified alongside the retirees Barrichello, Schumacher, Kovalainen, Maldonado and Rosberg.


Sutil is 11th with Di Resta an impressive 12th on debut. Behind him we have Alguersuari, Heidfeld, Trulli and D'Ambrosio.


Kobayashi makes Sauber's day even better with eighth ahead of Massa, with Buemi behind him taking the final points place.


Button comes home in sixth ahead of Perez, who has enjoyed a remarkable debut.


Alonso fourth then while Webber immediately parks up after crossing the line in fifth.


Hamilton finishes second while Petrov does enough for a podium finish. Great show.




Alonso, Webber and Button have made three stops while Vettel, Hamilton and Petrov made two. And Perez one!


As we begin the final lap, Lotus Renault's Petrov maintains position from Alonso in the Ferrari and seems set for a podium.


A 1:30.064 from Petrov, his quickest of the race so far. Alonso will struggle to find a way past with laps running out.


Vettel 15.2s clear of Hamilton despite easing off slightly. Petrov now has to defend from double world champ Alonso...


Massa with a clean pass on Buemi for ninth. Mexican Perez in seventh has only made one stop - very impressive conservation of tyres.


Massa, on fresh tyres in 10th, attacks Buemi but is fended off and loses some time on the Toro Rosso.


Massa with the fastest lap of the race - 1:29.451. Barrichello forced to retire from 15th and comes in.


Alonso eyes Petrov, who stands third.


Massa comes in to release Perez. Kobayashi and Buemi also now ahead of the Brazilian.


Vettel's lead now just over 12 seconds. A dominant performance from the young German.


Button passes Massa for sixth!! Wondering who's who in F1 this season?


Hamilton is now 11.4s behind Vettel and will have to settle for second, it seems. A further gap of 21s back to Petrov and another 10 back to Alonso. There the action begins, with Webber right up behind him and Massa and Button, some way back, also fighting.


Alonso with the fastest lap of the race, a 1:29.6.


The order: 1.Vettel 2.Hamilton 3.Petrov 4.Alonso 5.Webber 6.Massa 7.Button 8.Perez 9.Kobayashi 10.Buemi 11.Sutil 12.Di Resta 13.Heidfeld 14.Alguersuari 15.Barrichello 16.Trulli 17.D'Ambrosio 18.Glock OUT: Schumacher, Kovalainen, Maldonado, Rosberg


Alonso in and comes out just ahead of Webber - the Australian again with bad luck at his home race! If he hadn't run wide at turn three... still, it makes for good racing at the Aussie begins to mount his attack.


Sauber tell Perez to attack Button. In eighth, he is a second behind.


Webber out in clean air with no one behind him either - quite a slow stop. But he runs wide at turn three!


Behind Alonso, Petrov is fifth from Massa. In comes Webber...


Button has been in for a very quick stop and stands seventh. He could be set for a top five yet... will reliability let Vettel take the race win?


Hamilton now 9.5s off Vettel as Alonso puts current third-place sitter Webber under pressure.


McLaren inform Hamilton that they do not want to make another stop with 21 laps to go. Petrov has also been in from third, looking more comfortable in that position prior to the stop.


In comes Vettel - and so does Lewis. Hamilton's stop slightly quicker than that of the Red Bull.


Vettel tells Red Bull that his tyres are coming to the end of their lifespan. A poor lap last time out for him.


Hamilton actually running quickly. Still time yet for the Briton, perhaps...


Hamilton having to nurse the undertray round but it is not slowing him especially at present. He also has a big gap back to Petrov in third.


Hamilton comes over the grass at turn one and has damaged the undercarriage it seems. Back to 12.2s off Vettel now.


Schumacher on his race and retirement: "I had a good start and made up a few positions. Someone knocked on my right rear at turn three, I don't know who, and I had a puncture - a consequence of that was the rear tyre was destroyed coming back to the pits. That destroyed the rear floor... I had a suspension problem - the left and right were not equal. It was not worth it so after 20 laps the team rightly decided to bring me in and not risk anything." The driver who caught him was Alguersuari.


Hamilton a full nine seconds off Vettel. The German world champion looking good for a race win here. Petrov up to third.


Alonso has been in a second time and resumed ahead of Button. Not a fast pitstop from the Prancing Horse boys.


Glock is at the back of the grid and 'racing' again having spent many minutes in the garage. Kovalainen's problem was a water leak.


Barrichello has a drivethrough penalty for the move that caused Rosberg's retirement.


The order: 1.Vettel 2.Hamilton 3.Webber 4.Petrov 5.Alonso 6.Massa 7.Button 8.Kobayashi 9.Buemi 10.Sutil 11.Di Resta 12.Heidfeld 13.Perez 14.Alguersuari 15.Barrichello 16.Trulli 17.D'Ambrosio 18.Glock OUT: Schumacher, Kovalainen, Maldonado, Rosberg


Button uses the new DRS technology to rush past the Sauber of Kobayashi for seventh.


And that has put Button back into eighth. Barrichello down in 15th.


The German's Mercedes emitting blue smoke as he resumes a couple of spaces further back - and he is forced out. Very unfair on him.


Barrichello tries to get up the inside of Rosberg where there is no space and they touch... the Brazilian spins out but ends up on track.


Kovalainen is a goner - his Lotus stands in the grass. And Schumacher is also out of the race after driving straight into the garage.


Home driver Webber differs from most as he has hard tyres on his car - and he is lapping much more slowly than the likes of Ferrari.


Timo Glock cruising round the track - his Virgin has a problem after recently pitting.


And Button makes his pitstop later than he would have liked. Soft tyres for him and Scot Di Resta in the Force India immediately attacks the McLaren.


Vettel's best lap of 1:30.8 dead is a second quicker than that of Hamilton. Webber, Petrov and Alonso now behind the two leaders - all have pitted. Button sixth.


Vettel's lead now 6.5s over Hamilton. Button comes in for the drivethrough.


Kovalainen locking up the Lotus Renault in 13th and comes across the grass.


Hamilton out a way off Vettel and just behind Button, in fact. His compatriot will surely get out of his way to let him resume the fight with Vettel. Good news for Red Bull.


Vettel is on soft tyres now. He swoops past Button... and in comes Hamilton.


Button hit with a drivethrough penalty - little deliberation needed.


Vettel's lead down to 1.2s and comes into the pits. Can Lewis emerge ahead of him after he's been in?


Webber has been in and come back out in ninth and now, a couple of laps later, Massa also does so. Would have to be a drivethrough penalty.


Button tells his team he had track position so does not feel it was his fault. Race director Charlie Whiting and his stewards are officially investigating the incident now.


And Alonso sneaks up the inside of his team-mate. Will the McLaren driver be penalised by race stewards? He got caught out at turn 11 and cut the corner.


Button past Massa but gained an unfair advantage - and Alonso is also there! How will he let one Ferrari through and not the other? The answer is he won't - for now!


Pastor Maldonado's Williams comes to a stop at turn nine and will retire.


The drivers who made it to Q3 are on the tyres they used there so their lifespan is coming to an end - the teams preparing to bring them in.


Button increasingly frustrated and is now coming under pressure from the other Ferrari of Alonso. Massa closing the door repeatedly.


Buemi passes Briton Di Resta, who had a superb start to move up to 10th at the race start. He is 11th now.


Button complaining over the radio about the tyres on the straight. His use of DRS still not seeing him past Massa.


Vettel's lead stabilised at just over three seconds. The first pitstops could be as early as lap 10.


The order: 1.Vettel 2.Hamilton 3.Webber 4.Petrov 5.Massa 6.Button 7.Alonso 8.Rosberg 9.Kobayashi 10.Di Resta 11.Buemi 12.Sutil 13.Heidfeld 14.Perez 15.Barrichello 16.Kovalainen 17.Maldonado 18.Trulli 19.D'Ambrosio 20.Glock 21.Alguersuari 22.Schumacher


Vettel leads by 3.1 seconds but is not building on that as Hamilton sets the fastest lap with 1:32.582. Schumacher had a puncture and is way back in last position.


Rubens Barrichello's Williams shot off at the first corner as he looked to make up grid position from 17th.


Button opens the Drag Reduction System on the main straight but is fended off by the Ferrari again.


Webber all over Hamilton while Button is challenging Massa. Both drivers successfully defending for now.


Alguersuari has to come in after a lap with damage.


Positions seven to 10: Nico Rosberg, Kamui Kobayashi, Fernando Alonso - down four spots in the Ferrari - and Jaime Alguersuari.


Webber stays third but Button is down to sixth with Renault's Vitaly Petrov up to fourth from sixth and Felipe Massa making up three spaces for fifth!


Blazing start from Vettel! He builds an immediate gap with Hamilton recovering after a slow one to retain second.




The drivers find their spots on the grid after that lap with no incedents.


Ready for the formation lap. Michael Schumacher is on soft tyres. We have hard and soft compounds this weekend.


Christian Horner did not give anything away regarding whether Red Bull are running KERS today - but is very confident that the car complies with race regulations.


A lot has been said about the tyres, but they have performed better than expected so far. Degredation is actively encouraged though so expect at least two pitstops per driver.


The skies are blue and the sun is shining - no chance of rain it seems after two days of inclement weather. The sun will set late in the race though.


A fly-past screams above the grid - a Boeing 747 - as the drivers prepare to get into their cars. Excitement building.


With 15 minutes to race time, the grid observes a minute's silence to honour the victims of the earthquake and tsunami in Japan.


However it was less good news for HRT - an appeal to be allowed to race despite not setting the required qualifying time was dismissed by race stewards.


Red Bull's world champion Sebastian Vettel picked up where he left off by dominating qualifying to claim pole position Down Under for the second year in a row.


McLaren's Lewis Hamilton starts from the front row at the season-opening Australian Grand Prix at Albert Park in Melbourne.