Lewis Hamilton drove a flawless race from start to finish to claim his 88th career victory and his fourth of the 2020 Formula 1 season in a largely uneventful Spanish Grand Prix.
The Mercedes driver started from pole position and held the lead into Turn 1, never conceding it as he crossed the finish line to take the chequered flag 66 laps later, further extending his points lead at the helm of the standings.
Winner last time out Max Verstappen capitalised on a slow start for Valtteri Bottas, jumping into second by the first corner as Bottas fell to fourth with an aggressive Lance Stroll taking third place.
Although Bottas would eventually pass the Racing Point a handful of laps later, the Finn never looked like he had the pace to challenge for the win, nor to even catch Verstappen as he finished 44 seconds adrift thanks to a late stop on Lap 65 for fresh tyres to steal the point for fastest lap – his third pit stop of the race.
That start wasn’t a Stroll!
Stroll jumped to third by the second corner on the opening lap as he took an aggressive line up the inside, entering Turn 1 side-by-side with Bottas before forcing the Mercedes onto the kerbs, allowing the Canadian to get his nose ahead and complete the move.
Although he would eventually concede the position on Lap 6, he showed strong pace throughout the race to cross the line fifth, only to be promoted to fourth thanks to a five-second time penalty for team-mate Sergio Perez, who was hit for ignoring blue flags as race winner Hamilton lapped everyone apart from Bottas and Verstappen.
Daniil Kvyat was also hit with the same penalty for the same reason, though he finished outside the points in 12th, with his result unaffected by the penalty.
McLaren’s Carlos Sainz was sixth as his attempt to close up on Perez to jump the Mexican at the finish failed by just a handful of seconds.
Points, but Ferrari’s misery continues
Sebastian Vettel was Ferrari’s only points scorer as he finished seventh for the Scuderia in what was a slightly better race for the German, who avoided any spins, but the same can’t be said for Charles Leclerc.
Leclerc spun at the final chicane, although he can’t solely be blamed as his power unit shut-off due to an “electrical issue” as a result of impacting a kerb too hard. He got going again but retired on the following lap.
As far as poor races goes, Alexander Albon’s struggles continued as he dropped back from sixth on the grid to finish eighth, with a poor strategy the main culprit.
Pierre Gasly and Lando Norris completed the top ten in what was a race to forget for its lack of action, with dark clouds failing to deliver the much needed rain shower that might just have saved it.