Nico Rosberg (Mercedes) won pole ahead of Daniel Ricciardo (Red Bull) and the Ferraris of Kimi Raikkonen and Sebastian Vettel. Rosberg’s teammate started last on the grid following power unit replacement.
Daniil Kvyat (Red Bull) passed inside Vettel through the first series of turns, the German colliding with Raikkonen in avoidance. Kyvat took third. Ricciardo snatched the lead at the start, but Rosberg passed him early in Lap 3 with the Aussie suffering a blown left-rear in the process and falling through the field. The safety car came out during the next lap.
A large series of pits ensued, with Rosberg leading Felipe Massa (Williams) and Fernando Alonso (McLaren) during the caution. Green-flag happened a few laps later. Kyvat passed Alonso on track and had taken Massa by Lap 16 (of 56). Vettel had moved into P3 by Lap 22 and passed Kvyat on track during Lap 36 to move in second behind Ricciardo, who had only pitted twice compared to at least three stops for everyone else. Ricciardo pitted two laps later.
Rosberg led Vettel and Kvyat during Lap 40. Rosberg continued to pull away to the end and beat Vettel by 38 sec to take his sixth straight win. Kvyat finished third. Rosberg’s sixth victory in a row tied him in F1 history with Alberto Ascari, Michael Schumacher, and Vettel. Vettel’s second-place finish moved him into fourth in the driver standings, leapfrogging both Raikkonen and Romain Grosjean (Haas).
Driver standings (Top 10)
Nico Rosberg (Germany), Mercedes – 75
Lewis Hamilton (Great Britain), Mercedes – 39
Daniel Ricciardo (Australia) Red Bull – 36
Sebastian Vettel (Germany), Ferrari – 33
Kimi Raikkonen (Finland) Ferrari – 28
Felipe Massa (Brazil), Williams-Mercedes – 22
Daniil Kvyat (Russia), Red Bull – 21
Romain Grosjean (France), Haas-Ferrari – 18
Max Verstappen (Netherlands), Toro Rosso-Ferrari – 13
Valtteri Bottas (Finland), Williams-Mercedes – 7
Mercedes (Rosberg, Hamilton) – 114
Ferrari (Vettel, Raikkonen) – 61
Red Bull Racing (Ricciardo, Kvyat) – 57
Williams-Mercedes (Massa, Bottas) – 29
Haas-Ferrari (Grosjean, Esteban Gutierrez) – 18
Toro Rosso-Ferrari (Carlos Sainz Jr., Verstappen) – 17
Force India-Mercedes (Nico Hulkenberg, Sergio Perez) – 6
McLaren-Honda (Fernando Alonso, Jenson Button) - 1
Next event: Russian Grand Prix – Sochi, Apr. 29-May 1, 2016