Monaco Grand Prix: Vettel Wins Crash-Marred Race

Sebastian Vettel continued his impressive start to the 2011 Formula One season, winning the Monaco Grand Prix on Sunday for his fifth victory in six races this year.

Vettel benefited from a multi-car accident in the 72nd lap that forced organizers to suspend the race for several minutes. Running on worn out tires, Vettel was barely holding off Fernando Alonso and Jenson Button when Adrian Sutil of Force India went wide before hitting the wall in the Swimming Pool part of the famous street circuit of Monaco. Jaime Alguersuari of Toro Rosso then overshot the kerbs and bumped McLaren’s Lewis Hamilton, who consequently caused Renault’s Vitaly Petrov to crash heavily into the wall. The Red Flag was raised after Petrov appeared to have lost his consciousness, allowing the teams to freely work on their cars.

When the race resumed, Vettel had changed tires, which helped the Red Bull driver to easily open a gap between him and his pursuers in the last six laps of the race. Alonso finished second, while Button settled for third place. Mark Webber of Red Bull and Sauber’s Kamui Kobayashi rounded out the top five.

With a third of the season over, Vettel now has 143 points on five wins out of six races. Hamilton is a far second with 85 points followed by Vettel’s teammate, Webber, at 79 points.