It's lights out and away we go. Hamilton, then, gets away well.
Verstappen off the line well and he's already wheel to wheel with Valtteri Bottas.
And there is Alex Albon
on the inside of Bottas as well, and Perez coming up on the inside of Verstappen, who is now
in second place. Hamilton, Verstappen, Perez,
then Albon and Ricciardo. Bottas has lost four places already as they file their way
through. And Lance Stroll going off the track already.
And that... is that damage for Lando Norris?
That's certainly damage and a big fire there as they exited out of Turn 3.
And that looks very nasty indeed. And unsurprisingly
that is a red flag that has been put out by race control already.
That was horrendous,
as the car went into the barrier.
Just at the bottom of your screen, Lance Stroll goes wide.
Now, this is after Turn 3.
And you see Grosjean... one car out there... and then Grosjean to the right-hand side.
My God! That's torn the car in half!
No wonder the fuel came out of it! - Yeah.
I said the fuel was in the middle of the car, and it's literally...
Woah! That's extraordinary!
The car... Has gone through the barrier,
you see. The car's gone through the barrier.
And that's then
been sort of used as a wrench, as it were, to literally rip the car in half.
And there we can see... So Romain's getting himself... Yeah, he was in the flames for a long time,
wasn't he? Getting himself out. Jumping as fast as he can over the barrier.
There were three people on the other side
of the barrier who have all had a bit of a lucky escape, I think, there.
That's a miracle.
I have not seen a car like that in my time commentating on Formula 1.
I've never seen a Formula 1 car do that.
That's brilliant. A round of applause as
these images are being shown in the pit lane.
Lights out and away we go.
And for the second time Hamilton gets away well.
And for the second time, the guy in third has made a very good start.
This time it's Sergio Perez. And Max Verstappen on the inside has Perez for company as
Verstappen slips past the Racing Point.
Valtteri Bottas will now put Perez under pressure.
Alex Albon ahead of Lando Norris, who's started well.
Daniel Ricciardo has dropped back just a little bit.
He's lost quite a few places actually,
as now on the inside Valtteri Bottas has a look at Sergio Perez. Thinks better of it.
Albon, now, round the outside of the Mercedes,
as Hamilton leads them down the hill,
ahead of Max Verstappen. Then comes Perez
and Bottas gets past Alex Albon. Behind Alex Albon comes Lando Norris,
Esteban Ocon. Pierre Gasly's
just been overtaken by Charles Leclerc.
Daniel Ricciardo is tenth.
Yeah, didn't work out well for Ricciardo. Albon
fancied a run around the outside of the Mercedes. Bottas was having none of it.
But we have got an incident at the back there, in Turn 8.
We've got a spinner and Lance Stroll,
I think, is involved and now we've got a Safety Car.
So Lance was... Behind Sainz A little bit under pressure there from Sainz. He's turned in
Turned in. And yeah... Crunch!
Well, talk to Ian Roberts What a busy man
he has been in the opening stages of this
Bahrain Grand Prix, on hands... And the fire extinguishers just keeping
those parts that are overheating a little bit cooler.
Valterri Bottas has got a puncture.
Yeah, they've just been on the radio and they've told Lewis [that] Bottas is coming in.
He's got a puncture. They've told him to stay as close,
obviously, as the cars in front, but I don't know where he's picked that up.
Lewis Hamilton, then, leads them over the line to start lap 9.
Max Verstappen looking in his mirrors to see where Sergio Perez is.
Alex Albon looking to see where Lando Norris is as well.
And there's Charles Leclerc down the inside of Esteban Ocon
into Turn 1. The Ferrari pushes the Renault wide
but Ocon is having none of that. Gets out his
oversized elbows and reclaims that place. They're now going wheel to wheel
towards Turn 4. That's Kvyat and that's
Leclerc... Gasly I should say... almost swapping places into Turn 4.
Hamilton leads them down the hill from Verstappen, from Perez.
Then comes Albon, Norris, and Ocon still ahead of Leclerc.
Maybe he's just got it in a horrible zone
with the weight of the car, the tyre pressure...
Oh, this is going to be good.
Carlos Sainz down the inside of Charles Leclerc. How about that
at high speed into Turn 1?
The McLaren is past the Ferrari.
Uh-oh! And Carlos Sainz moves up into seventh place
And there's a little marker for next year when they're team mates.
It's so close in terms of points
in the championship and it's giving us some great entertainment, as down
the inside goes Pierre Gasly on Charles Leclerc, and that Ferrari might
start to be struggling on its tyres somewhat.
It does tend to overwork its tyres
a little bit and maybe they're getting a bit hot here in the desert.
Daniil Kvyat, Martin, has got a penalty.
Yep, the stewards have decided it was his fault, all his fault.
Here comes Carlos Sainz
on Esteban Ocon, down the main
straight. Ocon moves to the inside to try and cover it.
Carlos Sainz just says, "I'll brake a bit later,
I think. Go round the outside,
pinch the inside line for Turn 2. I'm going to get past you."
Ocon tried to make it hard
and Carlos Sainz was having none of it.
No team orders here. Ricciardo
is going to go for it, though.
Ocon moves to the inside once again to try and defend. Defends quite nicely.
He got very punchy earlier in the race against Charles Leclerc, did Esteban Ocon.
That was brilliant to see.
Now, though, he's under pressure once again, DRS-assisted. Daniel Ricciardo's coming
at him into Turn 4 and manages to move past his team mate.
Is that smoke? Is that Sergio Perez?
Perez, never finished on the podium in consecutive races.
And what a time for Alex Albon to inherit
third place in a race for his second podium in Formula 1.
What does this, though, mean for the constructors championship?
Switch it off, Sergio! Switch it off! Yeah, switch it off! And someone get a fire extinguisher near that car.
It's been a very long race.
Lewis Hamilton has come through to win
the Bahrain Grand Prix once more. And Red Bull, with second and third,
get both drivers on the podium: Verstappen and Albon. For the first time
Red Bull with two cars on the podium since Japan
2017. And a race
where, well, we had early drama,
we had late drama.
Despite Lewis Hamilton saying that it was a difficult race, from the outside,
for him, it looked like no drama.
Hamilton wins the Bahrain Grand Prix.