The 2007 Canadian Grand Prix, formally the XLIV Grand Prix du Canada, was the sixth race of the 2007 FIA Formula One World Championship, staged on 10 June 2007 at the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve in Montreal, Canada. The race would be significant as the maiden victory for Lewis Hamilton, as several major incidents culminated in a huge accident for Robert Kubica.
Qualifying had seen the two McLaren-Mercedes duel for pole position, a battle which was won for the first time by Hamilton by four tenths of a second. Fernando Alonso hence started from second, while the two Ferraris found themselves behind Nick Heidfeld in the #9 BMW Sauber.
The start of the race saw Alonso attempt to assert his dominance, challenging teammate Hamilton on the brakes around the outside of the first corner. Yet, the Brit resisted and forced Alonso to run wide, with the Spaniard ultimately running out of track and running onto the tarmac and grass on the inside of turn two, damaging his car.
Behind the start was fairly tame, with Alonso scrambling back onto the circuit in second ahead of Heidfeld whom had fended off the Ferraris. Elsewhere, Jenson Button stalled as his Honda suffered a loss of first gear, meaning he was relegated to the back of the field.
Scott Speed would remove himself from precedings at the end of the opening lap, breaking his suspension after hitting Alexander Wurz on the run to the hairpin. That, however, would be the only incident of note during the early stages, with Hamilton able to ease away from teammate Alonso at the head of the field.
Indeed, Alonso was throwing everything he had at his teammate but still losing ground, as show by two more offs at turn one during the first stint. The latter proved disasterous as he slipped behind both Heidfeld and Massa, with the Brazilian subsequently moving into second when the German racer made his first stop.
Hamilton made his stop on lap 22, moments before the pitlane was closed as a result of the Safety Car being called upon. The cause would be Adrian Sutil, who had buried his car into the wall at turn four, resulting in some major headaches for those who had yet to stop.
Alonso and Nico Rosberg were the first losers, having been forced to pit for fuel while the pitlane was closed, earning themselves ten-second stop-go penalties. Massa and Giancarlo Fisichella, meanwhile, would wait until the pits were opened to make their stops, followed in by most of the rest of the field, only to leave the pits with the red light showing.
Once the stops were sorted out it was Hamilton who led from Heidfeld, Alonso, Rosberg and Rubens Barrichello, with the Brit acing the restart on lap 27 to escape once again. However, the race had barely got underway before the SC was required again, this time the result of Kubica suffering a huge accident at the hairpin.
The Polish racer had been fighting Jarno Trulli on the run to the hairpin, and had been nudged onto the grass by the Italian. Out of control the #10 BMW Sauber was thrown into the air by an escape road, clipped the front of Speed's abandoned Toro Rosso-Ferrari and slammed into the inside wall, before bouncing and barrel-rolling back across the circuit. Kubica came to a rest with his car on its side on the outside of the hairpin, and required assistance to escape the car having sustained ankle injuries and a concussion.
The race restarted for a second time on lap 34, with Hamilton again easing away from Heidfeld, while Alonso and Rosberg served their penalties. That, miraculously put Anthony Davidson into third, only for the #23 Super Aguri-Honda to hit a groundhog and be forced to pit for repairs.
Further SC appearances were caused later in the race, the first for debris left by Christijan Albers, and the last to remove Vitantonio Liuzzi from the Wall of Champions. In between the majority of the field would make their second stops, while Massa and Fisichella were disqualified for their pitlane transgression, resulting in a drastically different order at the final restart.
Indeed, the order was settled from that restart on lap 60, with Hamilton easing through the closing stages to claim a dominant victory ahead of Heidfeld. Third would go to Wurz, up from nineteenth on the grid, while Heikki Kovalainen survived well to finish fourth ahead of Kimi Räikkönen, with Takuma Sato overtaking Alonso late on to secure sixth and leave the Spaniard to defend from Ralf Schumacher in the closing stages.
Fernando Alonso moved to the top of the title hunt as a result of the Monaco Grand Prix, moving level with teammate Lewis Hamilton on 38 points. However, while the pair were level on points, it was the Spaniard's two wins to the Brits zero that meant he was ahead, as they estabished a five point margin over third placed Felipe Massa. Kimi Räikkönen and Nick Heidfeld had lost ground in fourth and fifth, while Alexander Wurz had become the season's fourteenth scorer.
In the Constructors Championship McLaren-Mercedes had continued to grow their advantage, their Monaco one-two putting them onto 76 points for the season. Ferrari had therefore lost a fair amount of ground in second, leaving the Principality twenty points behind, while BMW Sauber had slipped 46 points back. Renault and Williams-Toyota completed the top five, with eight teams on the score-sheet.
The full entry list for the 2007 Canadian Grand Prix is outlined below:
McLaren-Mercedes predictably topped the timesheets for P1, ahead of the two Ferraris. The only replacement driver for the morning was Kazuki Nakajima, sitting in for Nico Rosberg in the Williams-Toyota. Robert Kubica failed to set a time with technical problems.
P2 was surprisingly eventful, with several cars crashing and having close calls. Alonso again topped the sheets, ahead of Massa, Hamilton then a hard-pushing Räikkönen. Scott Speed was involved in a crash with Mark Webber, after the Australian unexpectedly slowed causing Speed to run into the back of him. Jarno Trulli twice caused damage to his Toyota, while Adrian Sutil narrowly missed damage when flying over a kerb. Heikki Kovalainen had to sat out much of the session, following an early crash.
P3 saw red flags waved early on, after Kovalainen's Renault spewed oil over the track. This meant some drivers struggled to set representative times, so Hamilton topped the leaderboard in this session. McLaren and Ferrari hogged the top four yet again.
|Nick Heidfeld||BMW Sauber||1:18.634||7||1:17.827||5||1:18.428||19|
|Robert Kubica||no time||22||1:18.399||12||1:17.601||13|
|David Coulthard||Red Bull-Renault||1:18.717||9||1:18.316||11||1:17.391||9|
|Vitantonio Liuzzi||Toro Rosso-Ferrari||1:20.331||19||1:18.493||14||1:17.799||17|
|Takuma Sato||Super Aguri-Honda||1:18.898||11||1:18.309||10||1:16.864||5|
Q1 saw both the Spykers round out the bottom, to be joined by Wurz, Kovalainen, Ralf Schumacher and Anthony Davidson. Kovalainen had earlier in the session hit the wall, and rapid repairs meant he could rejoin, however his torrid weekend continued when he was knocked down the order from a peak of thirteenth. An engine change pushed him further down the grid, and he would start the race from the back of the grid.
For the pole position shoot-out, it was a McLaren predictably on top, with Lewis Hamilton taking the honours ahead of teammate Fernando Alonso. Nick Heidfeld surprised the Ferraris by placing his BMW Sauber third.
The full qualifying results for the 2007 Canadian Grand Prix are outlined below:
|3||9||Nick Heidfeld||BMW Sauber||6||1:17.006||3||1:15.960||3||1:16.266||3|
|6||15||Mark Webber||Red Bull-Renault||10||1:17.315||6||1:16.257||6||1:16.913||6|
|8||10||Robert Kubica||BMW Sauber||9||1:17.267||8||1:16.368||8||1:16.993||8|
|11||22||Takuma Sato||Super Aguri-Honda||14||1:17.490||11||1:16.743||11|
|12||18||Vitantonio Liuzzi||Toro Rosso-Ferrari||16||1:17.541||12||1:16.760||12|
|14||14||David Coulthard||Red Bull-Renault||13||1:17.436||14||1:17.304||14|
|16||19||Scott Speed||Toro Rosso-Ferrari||12||1:17.433||16||1:17.571||16|
|17||23||Anthony Davidson||Super Aguri-Honda||17||1:17.542||17|
- T Indicates a driver used their test/spare car to set their best time in that session.
- Bold indicates the fastest driver's time in each session.
- * Kovalainen was awarded a ten place grid penalty for changing his engine.
- * Albers would start the race from the pitlane.
Although Hamilton got off well, he had to defend from Alonso on the right and Heidfeld on the left. He was able to keep Nick behind going into turn 1, but Alonso kept going and ran wide. He cut across the grass and was almost t-boned by his teammate at the exit of turn 2, dropping to third as a consequence. Jenson Button did not make it off the grid, with a gearbox problem, the only casualty of the first few corners.
After a relatively quite first few laps, Scott Speed became the second retirement of the afternoon, breaking his suspension with an audacious move on Alexander Wurz into turn 8. He tapped the back of the Williams, damaging Wurz's rear wing in the process.
Fernando Alonso, unable to catch Heidfeld and Hamilton ran wide again at turn 1 on lap 14. Alonso, frustrated by his lack of pace did so again 5 laps later. This second mistake meant Felipe Massa was able to sweep past into 3rd. On the same lap, David Coulthard was clearly not impressed with his Red Bull's performance, responding to a radio message with the classic "Not good. Doesn't turn, doesn't stop, no traction. Apart from that it's great, having lots of fun".
Lewis Hamilton pitted from the lead on lap 21 and slotted in fourth. However this early pit-stop seemingly proved erroneous, as Adrian Sutil's crash on the same lap meant he lost his free pit-stop. Coming into turn four, the Spyker tailboned out and slapped the wall, breaking his suspension. Under the safety car, Vitantonio Liuzzi hit the wall on the start of the pit straight, however he was fortunate enough to carry on with no damage. Alonso opted to pit after the safety car was deployed, which meant he - and Nico Rosberg had to take a 10 second stop-go penalty later in the race. Further confusion reigned under this safety car, as both Massa and Giancarlo Fisichella left the pitlane while it was closed. This was investigated throughout the race, until the decision was made to disqualify both drivers on lap 51.
Hamilton made a quick restart, pulling away from Heidfeld and Alonso in second and third. Shortly after though, Robert Kubica pulled out of the slipstream of Jarno Trulli, but caught the rear wing at full speed. The BMW Sauber took off over the grass, and his right-front tyre was ripped off when tapping a marshal's post. Fortunately, his car hit the wall horizontally, as opposed to impacting with a slight elevation, yet his car still barrel-rolled across the track, just avoiding several cars driving into turn 10. His final impact with the barriers was limited with him bumping off one of his stricken tyres just before, leaving him in his Sauber on its side, with three wheels and the wings ripped off. Original reports suggested Kubica had a serious leg injury, but post-race it was confirmed there were no serious injuries, with the Pole eager to start the next race. Sebastian Vettel however replaced him in America for his first start, following concerns for Kubica's wellbeing by the FIA. The only other driver affected by this was Vitantonio Liuzzi, who had debris stuck to his right-front tyre.
On the restart following this safety car period, Nick Heidfeld was caught napping enabling Lewis Hamilton to build up a 2 second lead coming into the first chicane. Turn one saw another of many incidents in this race, with the Toyota and Williams-Toyota of Trulli and Rosberg facing the opposite direction from a spin. With their close proximity, it was assumed they had collided but replays shown that contact was non-existent. Trulli attempted an overtake on the inside of Rosberg, but spun after jumping over the kerb, whereas Rosberg humorously spun exiting the same corner, irrespective of Trulli. Both were able to continue, Rosberg albeit after a few seconds of stagnation. David Coutlhard's poor afternoon concluded early on the same lap, with a gearbox failure. Fellow Brit Anthony Davidson also had his race ruined, after it was reported that he had run over a groundhog, forcing him to pit.
Fernando Alonso, who had lost lots of time with his penalty, was relieved to see safety car flags being waved on lap 50, following Christijan Albers off-track excursion at the second chicane left debris over the track. Also to Fernando's joy were the disqualification of Fisichella and Massa, pushing him up further in the closed pack. Hamilton led again from Heidfeld on the restart, slowed this time by Webber ahead of him diving into the pits. Only a lap later, the safety car was called out again to recover Liuzzi's Toro Rosso, who had smashed into the Wall of Champions. Just before the safety car was called, Alonso attempted an overtake on Trulli into turn 1, but ran wide again onto the grass, allowing Räikkönen and Ralf Schumacher to pass him.
Under the safety car, Jarno Trulli crashed out leaving the pitlane, going too fast to catch up under the safety car. Hamilton again made another quick restart with 10 laps to go, followed by Heidfeld and Rubens Barrichello. The Brazilian though pitted soon after, allowing Wurz to move into the final podium position. The top five had no worries in finishing off the race, but Alonso was under threat from the quick Super Aguri of Takuma Sato, and dropped down to 7th on lap 68.
Lewis Hamilton took home the flag for his first win, and also took plaudits from global press for his impressive drive at such a young age. Heidfeld and Wurz completed the podium, with Heikki Kovalainen taking an impressive fourth after a dismal Friday and Saturday. Alonso finished seventh, holding off Scuhmacher, Webber, Rosberg and Davidson who were close behind.
The full results for the 2007 Canadian Grand Prix are outlined below:
|2||9||Nick Heidfeld||BMW Sauber||70||+4.343s||3||8|
|6||22||Takuma Sato||Super Aguri-Honda||70||+16.698s||11||3|
|9||15||Mark Webber||Red Bull-Renault||70||+22.960s||6|
|11||23||Anthony Davidson||Super Aguri-Honda||70||+24.318s||17|
|Ret||18||Vitantonio Liuzzi||Toro Rosso-Ferrari||54||Accident||12|
|Ret||14||David Coulthard||Red Bull-Renault||36||Suspension||14|
|Ret||10||Robert Kubica||BMW Sauber||26||Accident||8|
|Ret||19||Scott Speed||Toro Rosso-Ferrari||8||Collision||16|
- T Indicates a driver used their test/spare car.
- * Massa and Fisichella were disqualified from the race for ignoring a red light in the pitlane.
- Williams made their 500th Grand Prix appearance as a constructor.
- Maiden pole position for Lewis Hamilton.
- Maiden victory for Hamilton.
- McLaren scored their 151st win as a constructor.
- Third and final podium finish for Alexander Wurz.
- Tenth fastest lap recorded by Fernando Alonso.
A maiden victory for Lewis Hamilton would put the British rookie back on top of the Drivers' Championship leaving Canada, and with 48 points to his name having yet to finish off the podium. His title defending teammate Fernando Alonso was forced to make way for him and dropped eight behind, while Felipe Massa would leave Montreal fifteen points off the lead. Kimi Räikkönen had likewise lost ground in fourth, with Nick Heidfeld having closed right onto the Finn's tail in fifth.
In the Constructors Championship it was McLaren-Mercedes who once again ended the weekend on top, leaving Montreal with 88 points to their name and a 28 point advantage. Ferrari were still their closest challengers, but would need two strong weekends just to get back on terms with the Anglo-German alliance. BMW Sauber, meanwhile, had enhanced their grip on third ahead of Renault, while Williams-Toyota had held on to fifth.
Only points scoring drivers and constructors are shown.
- * Includes points scored by McLaren-Mercedes before their exclusion prior to the 2007 Belgian Grand Prix.
Images and Videos:
- '6. Canada 2007', statsf1.com, (Stats F1, 2014), https://www.statsf1.com/en/2007/canada.aspx, (Accessed 14/02/2020)
- 'Canada 2007: Joy of six for Lewis.', crash.net, (Crash Media Group, 10/06/2007), https://www.crash.net/f1/race-report/58813/1/canada-2007-joy-of-six-for-lewis, (Accessed 14/02/2020)
- 'Canada 2007: Entrants', statsf1.com, (Stats F1, 2014), https://www.statsf1.com/en/2007/canada/engages.aspx, (Accessed 14/02/2020)
- 'FORMULA 1™ Grand Prix du Canada 2007 - QUALIFYING', formula1.com, (Formula One World Championship Limited, 2006), https://www.formula1.com/en/results.html/2007/races/813/canada/qualifying.html, (Accessed 14/02/2020)
- 'Canada 2007: Result', statsf1.com, (Stats F1, 2016), https://www.statsf1.com/en/2007/canada/classement.aspx, (Accessed 14/02/2020)
|V T E||Canadian Grand Prix|
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