BAKU, Azerbaijan — Lewis Hamilton won a crash-littered, chaotic and entirely unpredictable Azerbaijan Grand Prix to seize the Formula One championship lead on Sunday and hand Mercedes its first victory of the season.
In a race where the safety car again played a major part, with a series of crashes and smashes, Kimi Raikkonen finished second for Ferrari while Sergio Perez was third for Force India.
Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel, who had led the championship before Baku and looked to be on course for his 50th career win and third out of four this season, started on pole position and finished fourth.
Hamilton now has 70 points to Vettel’s 66.
Red Bull’s Australian Daniel Ricciardo, last year’s winner in Baku and also in China two weekends ago, smashed into the back of teammate Max Verstappen in a lap 40 collision that ended the race for both of them.
Reporting by Alan Baldwin