Hamilton leads dominant Mercedes 1-2

World champion Lewis Hamilton began his title defence in perfect style with a controlled drive to victory in the Australian Grand Prix.

Hamilton leads dominant Mercedes 1-2
Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG F1 W06 leads behind the FIA Safety Car
Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG F1 W06 leads at the start of the race
Start: trouble for Pastor Maldonado, Lotus F1 Team
Nico Rosberg, Mercedes AMG F1 W06 on the grid
Pastor Maldonado, Lotus F1 E23 on the grid
Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG F1 Team
Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG F1 W06
Sergio Perez, Sahara Force India F1 on the drivers parade
Nico Hulkenberg, Sahara Force India F1 on the drivers parade
Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG F1 Team
(L to R): Pastor Maldonado, Lotus F1 Team; Romain Grosjean, Lotus F1 Team; Max Verstappen, Scuderia Toro Rosso; Nico Hulkenberg, Sahara Force India F1; Jenson Button, McLaren; on the grid

The Briton, starting from pole, was followed closely by Mercedes teammate Nico Rosberg, but his lead was never challenged in what was pretty much a processional race.

Rosberg secured Mercedes' first one-two of the year, finishing 1.4 seconds behind Hamilton.

Sebastian Vettel completed the podium in his first race for the Ferrari team after a pretty much trouble-free event.

But Mercedes' dominance was evident, with Vettel coming home over 34 seconds behind Hamilton.

Felipe Massa was fourth for Williams, while fellow Brazilian Felipe Nasr had an impressive debut to finish in fifth position for Sauber.

Local hero Daniel Ricciardo had to be content with sixth position ahead of Nico Hulkenberg and Marcus Ericsson, who completed a dream day for Sauber after a difficult weekend for the Swiss squad.

Toro Rosso's rookie Carlos Sainz finished in ninth, but he could have been much higher had he not lost a lot of time during a pitstop.

Sergio Perez completed the top ten, while Jenson Button was the last finisher, outside of the points.

The two Lotus of Pastor Maldonado and Romain Grosjean retired on the opening lap, the Venezuelan spinning into the wall after making contact with the Sauber of Felipe Nasr at Turn 1, which caused the safety car to be deployed.

Grosjean drove into the pits and out of the race at the end of lap one.

Only 15 cars started the race after Red Bull's Daniil Kvyat and McLaren's Kevin Magnussen failed to reach the grid before the start of the race.

Magnussen, starting from the back of the grid, stopped on his way to the grid with smoke coming from the back of his Honda-powered car.

Red Bull's Kvyat, starting 13th, was ruled out of the race with a broken gearbox also before the start.

Valtteri Bottas was declared unfit to race following his back problems during qualifying.

Australian GP results - 58 laps:

Pos. Driver Team Time/Gap
1 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1:31'54.067
2 Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1.300
3 Sebastian Vettel Ferrari 34.523
4 Felipe Massa Williams-Mercedes 38.100
5 Felipe Nasr Sauber-Ferrari 1:25.149
6 Daniel Ricciardo Red Bull-Renault 1 lap
7 Nico Hulkenberg Force India-Mercedes 1 lap
8 Marcus Ericsson Sauber-Ferrari 1 lap
9 Carlos Sainz Toro Rosso-Renault 1 lap
10 Sergio Perez Force India-Mercedes 1 lap
11 Jenson Button McLaren-Honda 2 laps
Retirements   Laps
  Kimi Raikkonen Ferrari 49
  Max Verstappen Toro Rosso-Renault 32
  Roberto Merhi Manor-Ferrari 0
  Daniil Kvyat Red Bull-Renault 0
  Will Stevens Manor-Ferrari 0
  Valtteri Bottas Williams-Mercedes 0
  Pastor Maldonado Lotus-Mercedes 0
  Romain Grosjean Lotus-Mercedes 0
  Kevin Magnussen McLaren-Honda 0
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