Hamilton wins Chinese Grand Prix

McLaren driver Lewis Hamilton has won the Formula One Chinese Grand Prix, ending the recent winning streak of Red Bull's Sebastian Vettel.

The British driver, who started third on the grid in Shanghai, overcame competition from team-mate Jenson Button and raced past Vettel with only four laps remaining to win his first race since last August's Belgian Grand Prix.

Vettel took second place while his Red Bull team-mate Mark Webber, who started the race from 18th position, snatched the final spot on the podium from Button.

The 15th victory of Hamilton's F1 career takes him onto 47 points, putting him in second place in the drivers' standings, 21 behind Vettel, while Button (38) is down to third place and Webber (37) fourth.

Pole man Vettel fluffed his lines at the start to allow Button, who made a perfect get-away from second place, to move comfortably ahead of the Red Bull going into the first corner, but the trouble was not over for Vettel, and going into the braking zone the German diced dangerously with Hamilton who forced his way into second.

The trio held station until just before the first round of pit stops, when things quickly unravelled for Button.

Moments after Vettel had used his car's DRS system to pass Hamilton for second, both he and Button pitted together, but Button committed the baffling error of pulling up alongside the Red Bull mechanics. Although he was quickly waved on to his own berth, the incident cost him time and Vettel duly moved ahead.

Webber's stunning recovery drive was really gaining impetus as he took Fernando Alonso for sixth on lap 46, but the real interest was at the head of the field with Hamilton now taking chunks of time out Vettel. At the end of lap 50 Vettel repelled an attempted overtake, but two laps later the deed was done, Hamilton pulling a brave move into turn seven before pulling clear.

Webber's sterling drive saw him climb to fourth on lap 54 as Nico Rosberg's slide continued, but the fired-up Australian was not done yet and he completed the drive of the day by snatching third from Button on the penultimate lap.

Copyright © Press Association 2011