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Cool Vettel finally conquers Canada


Red Bull Formula One driver Sebastian Vettel. Picture: REUTERS/Chris Wattie

Red Bull Formula One driver Sebastian Vettel. Picture: REUTERS/Chris Wattie

Red Bull Formula One driver Sebastian Vettel. Picture: REUTERS/Chris Wattie

SEBASTIAN Vettel made it third-time lucky in Canada by cruising to a deserved victory around Montreal's Circuit Gilles Villeneuve.

Starting from pole for the third year in a row, Vettel was never troubled in his Red Bull, finishing 14 seconds clear of title Fernando Alonso in his Ferrari.

The win made up for the fact Vettel had failed to take victory from pole the previous two years.

Alonso is now Vettel's nearest challenger after beating Mercedes' Lewis Hamilton in a thrilling late battle for the runner-up spot, but the Spaniard is 36 points adrift.

The bright, warm conditions meant the prospect of anything other than a Vettel victory was always going to be a long shot.

The outcome was effectively decided on lap one as Vettel opened up a two-second lead on Hamilton.

There were only two notable moments of consternation for the reigning champion, the first of which arose on lap 11 when he brushed a wall, leaving black scorch marks on the white paint as he pushed to extend a rapidly-increasing advantage over Hamilton at the time.

The second was on lap 52 when he appeared to lose concentration as he ran off the track at turn one.

Behind Vettel, the battle was all about second place, which for 63 laps appeared to be Hamilton's.

But switching to the medium Pirelli tyre for the final stint proved his undoing as he could not keep Alonso at bay.

The double world champion had several laps earlier passed Mark Webber to move up to third, aided in part by a damaged front wing to the Red Bull.

At that stage Webber was closing in on Hamilton, but instead of racing for second, had to content himself with fourth. Being no threat to Alonso, the Spaniard promptly set off in pursuit of Hamilton, sparking a fascinating tussle.

Eventually, Alonso held sway, but not without a brush of the tyres in the process as they headed into turn one.

Lotus' Kimi Raikkonen has now dropped behind Alonso in the standings after a see-saw race resulted in him finishing ninth

Meanwhile, a track worker at the grand prix died yesterday after being run over by a crane removing a car from the course.

The 38-year-old man, who has yet to be identified died after being taken by helicopter to hospital.

Formula One spokesman Matteo Bonciani said the man had dropped his radio after the recovery vehicle had lifted the car to return it to the pits. As he attempted to pick it up, he stumbled and was hit and run over.