Formula One

 
              === Hamilton outruns Rosberg for Bahrain GP win ===
 
 Sakhir,  Bahrain  (SportsNetwork.com) -  Lewis Hamilton  won the Bahrain Grand
 Prix  for the first time after a hard-fought battle with his Mercedes teammate
 Nico Rosberg throughout Sunday's 57-lap race.
 
 Rosberg started on the pole, but Hamilton pulled ahead of him to take the lead
 on  the  opening lap. Rosberg  caught Hamilton and  challenged him for the top
 spot just before they pitted for the first time.
 
 A  quick pit stop  allowed Hamilton to build a lead as high as 13 seconds over
 Rosberg  before  the  safety  car  was deployed  for  a  frightening  accident
 involving Sauber's Esteban Gutierrez on lap 41.
 
 After the restart with 11 laps to go, Rosberg challenged Hamilton for the lead
 again,  as the  two swapped the position multiple times before Hamilton pulled
 ahead for good.
 
 Hamilton,  the  2008 Formula One world  champion, crossed the finish line just
 one  second ahead  of Rosberg for his  24th career grand prix win, which moved
 him  into a tie with Juan Manuel Fangio for 10th on F1's all-time race winners
 list.
 
 "Nico  drove  fantastically well throughout  the race," Hamilton said. "It was
 very  hard to keep him behind, particularly at the end when I built a gap that
 was  OK. But he was very fast on the option tires. I was on the knife-edge the
 whole time. It was great fun and of course a real relief when I got across the
 line."
 
 Rosberg  also  finished second  to Hamilton in  last weekend's Malaysian Grand
 Prix. Rosberg began the season by winning the March 16 Australian Grand Prix.
 
 "I  strongly  dislike coming  second to  Lewis. That's  really not something I
 enjoy  doing,"  Rosberg said. "On  the other hand,  it was definitely the most
 exciting  race  I've ever done in  my career. I think  today was a day for the
 sport. We put on a massive show."
 
 It's  the first  time  Hamilton has  won back-to-back  grand  prix since  2010
 (Turkey and Canada).
 
 Sergio  Perez from Force India beat Red Bull's Daniel Ricciardo to the line by
 only  four-tenths of a  second to finish third and earn his first podium since
 the 2012 Italian Grand Prix.
 
 "It's  been  a while since  my last podium," Perez  said. "This podium is very
 special  for  me. It's only my  third race with the  team, and it was a really
 good one."
 
 Ricciardo  placed third  in Saturday's qualifying but had to start the Bahrain
 GP  from the  13th position due to  a 10-place grid penalty he received for an
 unsafe release during a pit stop in the Malaysian GP.
 
 "It  was an  awesome race," Ricciardo said after his fourth-place finish. "The
 car  came  to me  as the race  went on,  and I  was happy with  how I moved up
 through the pack, so a good day."
 
 Perez's  teammate, Nico  Hulkenberg, took  the  fifth spot,  while Red  Bull's
 Sebastian  Vettel, the four-time defending F1 world champion and winner of the
 Bahrain GP the past two years, finished sixth.
 
 Williams'  duo Felipe  Massa  and  Valtteri Bottas  were  seventh and  eighth,
 respectively,  while  Ferrari teammates  Fernando  Alonso  and Kimi  Raikkonen
 completed the top-10.
 
 Rosberg  has  now accumulated 61 points  for the season, compared to 50 points
 for Hamilton. Hulkenberg has 28 and Alonso 26.
 
 Gutierrez  was  not injured during  the accident. He  had just returned to the
 track  following a  pit stop when Pastor  Maldonado from Lotus hit the side of
 him  in turn  1. Gutierrez's car flipped  upside down and bounced on the track
 before it landed right up.
 
 "Wow,  what was  that," Gutierrez  said over  his team  radio after  the wreck
 occurred.
 
 Race  stewards determined that Maldonado caused the wreck and handed him a 10-
 second  stop-and-go penalty.  Maldonado  was later  issued  a five-place  grid
 penalty  for the April 20 Chinese Grand Prix and docked three points on his F1
 "Super License."
 
 04/06 14:48:15 ET

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