Australian in contention for world title after beating teammate Vettel into second.
|Button, left, congratulates his predecessor as world champion on the podium [AFP]|
Lewis Hamilton claimed his first victory of the season and the 12th of his career when he led McLaren teammate, fellow-Briton and defending champion Jenson Button home in a dramatic one-two at the Turkish Grand Prix.
The 2008 world champion claimed his first win since last year’s Singapore Grand Prix thanks to a solid and committed drive that enabled him to take full advantage of a bizarre and unexpected collision between the two Red Bull drivers after 40 of the 58 laps.
Mark Webber was leading with Red Bull teammate Sebastian Vettel second when the young German made an ill-judged passing move and steered right into the Australian’s car, sending both off the circuit.
Webber, 33, the drivers’ championship leader, managed to recover and re-join in third place, but the impetuous Vettel’s race was over as he crashed out – the incident gifting Hamilton, then third, and Button, fourth, the leading positions.
German Michael Schumacher, 41, the seven-times champion, came home fourth for Mercedes behind Webber with his teammate and compatriot Nico Rosberg fifth and Pole Robert Kubica sixth for Renault.
Brazilian Felipe Massa came home seventh for Ferrari ahead of Alonso in a disappointing result for the Italian team as they celebrated their 800th Grand Prix on Sunday.
German Adrian Sutil was ninth for Force India and Japanese Kamui Kobayashi picked up the final point and the Sauber team’s first this season in 10th place.
Hamilton’s win lifted him up to third in the drivers’ title race behind Webber, who continues to lead on 93 points with Button second
on 88. Vettel has 78.
In the constructors’ championship, McLaren leap-frogged to the top ahead of Red Bull on 172 points to 171.