Which driver emerged as the victor in the 2010 Bahrain Formula One Grand Prix?

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By Kristy Tolley

The 2010 Bahrain Formula One Grand Prix, held on March 14, marked the start of the 61st season of the world’s premier motorsport championship. The race was held at the Bahrain International Circuit, a 5.4-kilometer track consisting of 15 turns and featuring long straights and tight corners. The circuit was built in 2004 and was the first venue in the Middle East to host a Formula One race.

The 2010 season was highly anticipated, with several changes in teams, drivers, and regulations. The defending champion, Jenson Button, had moved from Brawn GP to McLaren, while seven-time champion Michael Schumacher had returned to the sport after a three-year retirement. The teams were also using a new tire supplier, Pirelli, and had to adapt to the ban on refueling during the race.

Qualifying Results

The qualifying session saw Red Bull’s Sebastian Vettel secure pole position with a time of 1:54.101, followed by Ferrari’s Felipe Massa and teammate Mark Webber. Reigning world champion Jenson Button could only manage fourth place, while Schumacher, making his comeback with Mercedes, qualified seventh.

The top ten on the grid were completed by Robert Kubica of Renault, Fernando Alonso of Ferrari, Nico Rosberg of Mercedes, Adrian Sutil of Force India, and Rubens Barrichello of Williams. Both Williams drivers, Nico Hulkenberg and Barrichello, had impressed with their performances in pre-season testing and were looking to make an impact in the race.

Race Start

The race got off to a clean start, with Vettel maintaining his lead into the first corner. Massa and Webber were close behind, while Button fell back to fifth place after a slow start. Schumacher, on the other hand, made up two positions to move up to fifth.

The opening laps saw little overtaking, with most drivers settling into a rhythm and trying to preserve their tires. There were a few minor incidents, such as Kamui Kobayashi of Sauber colliding with Jaime Alguersuari of Toro Rosso, but no serious damage was done.


The first round of pit stops began around lap 12, with most drivers switching from the soft to the hard compound tire. Vettel maintained his lead after his stop, but Massa closed the gap to within a second. Webber, Button, and Schumacher were still in contention, with Kubica and Alonso just behind.

The midfield battle also intensified, with several drivers jostling for position in the pack. Hulkenberg and Barrichello were both making good progress, while Sutil and Vitaly Petrov of Renault were dueling for eighth place.

The second round of pit stops began around lap 30, with most drivers opting for the hard tire again. Vettel managed to maintain his lead, but Massa dropped back after a slow stop. Webber, Button, and Schumacher were still in the hunt, with Kubica and Alonso now dropping back.

Final Stretch

The final stint of the race saw Vettel and Webber pull away from the rest of the field, with Button and Schumacher battling for third place. With 10 laps to go, Schumacher finally made his move on Button, overtaking him on the outside of turn four.

Vettel continued to lead, while Webber closed the gap to within a second. However, Vettel managed to hold on and crossed the finish line first, securing his first victory of the season and starting his bid for the championship in style. Webber finished second, while Schumacher completed the podium in third place.

Top 3 Drivers

Sebastian Vettel’s victory was the fourth of his career and the first at the Bahrain circuit. He had qualified on pole, set the fastest lap, and led the most laps, demonstrating his dominance throughout the race. Mark Webber had also put in a strong performance, finishing just 1.1 seconds behind his teammate and securing a Red Bull one-two. Michael Schumacher, in his first race back, had shown that he still had the speed and skill to compete at the highest level, and had made a strategic overtake on Button to claim third place.

Other Notable Drivers

Nico Hulkenberg had put in an impressive debut performance, qualifying in 13th place and finishing in 14th. Rubens Barrichello had also shown his experience, moving up from 11th on the grid to finish in 10th. Fernando Alonso had a disappointing race, finishing in fourth place after starting in seventh, while Jenson Button had struggled with his car’s balance and could only manage seventh.

Post-Race Analysis

The 2010 Bahrain Grand Prix was seen as a strong performance by Red Bull, who had struggled with reliability and consistency in previous seasons. Sebastian Vettel’s victory also marked the start of a dominant season for the team, who would go on to win the constructors’ championship and secure Vettel’s first world championship.

The race was criticized by some for being a dull procession, with little overtaking and few close battles. The ban on refueling had also led to some conservative strategies, with many drivers opting to pit early and run long stints on the harder tire. However, others argued that the race had shown the importance of tire management and strategic decision-making, which would become even more crucial in the coming seasons.

Podium Ceremony

The podium ceremony saw Vettel, Webber, and Schumacher receive their trophies and champagne, with the German national anthem playing in honor of Vettel. The drivers were congratulated by Bahrain’s Crown Prince, Sheikh Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa, who praised their performance and thanked them for coming to his country.

Championship Implications

Sebastian Vettel’s victory gave him 25 points and put him in the lead of the drivers’ championship, ahead of Webber on 18 and Schumacher on 15. Jenson Button was fourth with 12 points, while Fernando Alonso had 9. In the constructors’ championship, Red Bull led with 43 points, ahead of Ferrari on 21 and McLaren on 18.

Fan Reactions

Fan reactions to the race were mixed, with some praising the performance of Red Bull and Vettel, while others criticized the lack of action on track. Twitter and social media buzz focused on the dominance of the Red Bull team and the impressive debut of Nico Hulkenberg.


The 2010 Bahrain Grand Prix was a landmark moment in the history of Formula One, marking the start of a new era of regulations, tire suppliers, and driver lineups. It was also a race that demonstrated the importance of strategic decision-making and tire management, as well as the dominance of the Red Bull team and the skill of Sebastian Vettel. While it may not have been the most exciting race in the history of the sport, it set the tone for a season that would be full of drama, controversy, and excitement.

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Kristy Tolley

Kristy Tolley, an accomplished editor at TravelAsker, boasts a rich background in travel content creation. Before TravelAsker, she led editorial efforts at Red Ventures Puerto Rico, shaping content for Platea English. Kristy's extensive two-decade career spans writing and editing travel topics, from destinations to road trips. Her passion for travel and storytelling inspire readers to embark on their own journeys.

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