So Ferrari are third in the pecking order…

Date published: March 17 2019

Sebastian Vettel: Asks where Ferrari pace was

The mighty Mercedes are off the mark this season with one of no doubt many 1-2 finishes in 2019. Where on earth were Ferrari?

Here is how race day unfolded at Albert Park…

It wouldn’t be the season opener without a customary class photo pic. We like this grid line-up a lot.

No changes to the Australian GP grid

Tributes were also paid to the late, great Charlie Whiting who passed away on Thursday. A big, big loss to the Formula 1 world.

As the clock ticked down to lights out, Charles Leclerc was keeping it cool ahead of his first race in Ferrari colours.

Valtteri Bottas got off to a flying start in Australia, getting the jump on his team-mate Lewis Hamilton on the dash down to Turn 1.

New year, but same old misfortune for Daniel Ricciardo, though, as he lost his front wing mere seconds into the race.

Robert Kubica also lost his wing after a brush with Pierre Gasly.

McLaren’s Carlos Sainz was the first retirement. His car going up in flames after an MGU-K failure.

Haas, sadly, didn’t leave their Australian Grand Prix pit stop woes behind them in 2018. No doubt some great content for season two of the Netflix documentary.

At the halfway point, it was very much Valtteri Bottas’ race to lose with Hamilton struggling for pace.

Ricciardo, running with too much damage after his dramatic start, became the second retirement.

Grosjean, with his front left not fitted properly, soon followed…

Meanwhile, Max Verstappen was on the charge, overtaking Sebastian Vettel for P3 and in hot pursuit of Hamilton.

After all the talk about Ferrari in Winter Testing…it amounted to this exchange during the race:

So after a winless 2018 campaign, Bottas is off to a winning start at the first time of asking in 2019. And got a bonus point for the fastest  lap, too.

But the bigger talking point will no doubt be how Ferrari have failed to get on the podium in the opening race for the first time since 2014…

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