Ricciardo in brilliant style won the race in China

Daniel Ricciardo

In Mercedes' defence, Ferrari also chose not to pit Raikkonen, but both teams suffered as a result.

The Finnish driver got ahead of Vettel and it looked like the race would boil down to the Ferrari driver saving his tyres for a big push to overtake the Mercedes driver before the end of the race.

Unlike their rivals, Ricciardo and Verstappen dived into the pits to take on fresh rubber, and the gamble worked for Ricciardo as he passed Kimi Raikkonen, Lewis Hamilton, Vettel and finally Bottas for a quite remarkable win.

The championship leader ended up eighth, while Carlos Sainz came home ninth for Renault ahead of Kevin Magnussen in 10th.

"It's a fun way to win for sure", Ricciardo told Sky F1 after taking the lead in less than 20 laps, pulling off overtaking manoeuvres on the likes of reigning champion Lewis Hamilton, Raikkonen and Bottas.

A frustrated Hamilton was passed by Verstappen with eight laps to go but the Red Bull driver did not manage to pull out enough of a lead over the Mercedes to keep the place once his penalty was applied.

Nico Hulkenberg of Renault was sixth followed by Fernando Alonso of McLaren.

Driver of the dayNo contest this - Ricciardo was stunning in the closing laps.

Sunday's win was Ricciardo's first since a chaotic Azerbaijan Grand Prix last June and it also broke Mercedes' Shanghai stranglehold, with the champions having won the last six races there. But Ricciardo won in a harum-scarum race past year, so anything could happen.

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Ricciardo made the most of a mid-race safety vehicle and race strategy to charge from sixth to the lead of the race and claim his and Aston Martin Red Bull Racing's first win of the year.

"Fat lip and all I got the win". "[This race] was insane and a lot of fun". "There's over 700 members in our team and I think what we've demonstrated this weekend is that it all has to work in unison and the effort that went in yesterday to change that engine in two hours - an hour quicker than we've ever achieved it - and then the double pit stops for the first stop and then under the safety vehicle".

Strategy out the window: There was plenty of speculation about what the best strategy would be in China after the ultra-softs, for many teams, had failed to impress during Friday's race simulations.

And with Mercedes' poor decision-making on not pitting during the safety vehicle, Hamilton had no grip to defend Verstappen and Ricciardo, and subsequently finished fourth.

"At the rate we were going through the field, and I could feel the tyres were holding on well, I was obviously fully set on the win".

"We have been underperforming". "It kind of felt like we deserved a victory, but not today". We have lost performance since Melbourne and maybe even more so this weekend. "I'm thankful for a couple of incidents that kept us kind of in the battle".

"I saw Valtteri defend, I'd kind of committed from Turn 3 that I was gonna try". I was expecting him to come earlier. He misjudged it and compromised both of our results. Kimi Raikkonen was third for Ferrari.

"It is disappointing. We gave it everything we had", said Bottas.

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