Lewis Hamilton has no answers for his poor Russian GP performance

"Now I have my first, hopefully it is the first of many in F1 now that I know how to do it - I think today I proved I can win to the team and also myself". Bottas was expected to play second fiddle to Hamilton this season, but he has now out-qualified him for two successive races and moved to within 10 points of his team-mate in the title battle.

Montrealer Lance Stroll took an important first step in his young Formula One career by finishing his first Grand Prix on Sunday when he finished 11th in Russian Federation.

The pole, Vettel's 47th, ended a run of 18 in a row for once-dominant world champions Mercedes, who had Valtteri Bottas and Lewis Hamilton right behind the two red cars in third and fourth places.

The duo delivered an enthralling race after Bottas took the lead on the first lap.In a spectacular opening lap, Mercedes pilot Valtteri Bottas got off to the flawless start to take an immediate lead. "[It was] definitely worth the wait".

Valtteri Bottas emerged victorious in the 2017 Formula One Russian Grand Prix. But he was the star of the show Sunday.

Jolyon Palmer and Romain Grosjean collided on the second corner, forcing both to retire and the early deployment of a safety vehicle.

The 32-year-old Briton hugged Bottas in parc ferme, and latterly managed a smile and clenched fist for the cameras as Mercedes celebrated the Finn's victory in front of their garage after the race.

"It was hard to overtake and I had to deal with the shortcomings of the vehicle because I could not push it to the limit, but I'm sure I will get some points soon", he said.

Later, he added: "Why is my auto overheating, guys?" Big congratulations to Valtteri.

With Bottas showing strong pace, Ferrari were forced to try a slightly longer first tyre stint in order to have fresher tyres in the second stint. That helped Vettel to close in, but Bottas held on to cross the line 0.6 seconds ahead of the Ferrari.

"The odd opportunity to join this team came in the winter and they made it possible so thanks to them".

"From lap five onwards I just had to slow down and stay in fourth", he said. Renault's Nico Hulkenberg took eighth place, while Felipe Massa to ninth and Carlos Sainz Jr claimed tenth place and a sole point for the Toro Rosso team.

Red Bull are a distant third at present, with Max Verstappen and Daniel Ricciardo fifth and sixth in the standings, but they too could get back into the mix if impending upgrades to their engine and chassis are as good as they hope.

McLaren's Fernando Alonso is still yet to reach the checkered flag this season after his vehicle broke down on the formation lap.

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