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WATCH: The best onboard action from Australia

28 Mar 2017

Formula One racing's new era opened in some style in Australia, serving up a weekend to savour for Ferrari and Sebastian Vettel - and one to remember for all the wrong reasons for home hero Daniel Ricciardo. We take a look at the best of the action from the drivers' perspective...
Ricciardo's home heartbreak

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Daniel Ricciardo fans, look away now! After spinning out of Q3 - a rare mistake from a driver who makes very few - Red Bull's home favourite was determined to make amends in the race. But the unlucky Australian didn't even make it to the start after a sensor issue on his freshly replaced gearbox caused his car to stop on its way to the grid. The RB13 was returned to the pits and eventually sent on its way - but by then Ricciardo was two laps down and only destined for more heartbreak…


Stroll doesn't hold back on maiden F1 start

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You could forgive Lance Stroll for taking a cautious approach at the start of his maiden Grand Prix - but that simply isn't the Canadian's style. Instead the Williams man was one of the last of the late brakers into Turn 1, only narrowly avoiding contact with Marcus Ericsson's Sauber. That brave dive up the inside gained him several places (five in total on the first lap - a further two places picked up when Ericsson and Haas's Kevin Magnussen collided just ahead of him at Turn 3), but the lock-up also caused a flat spot that necessitated an early pit stop. A rookie error? Perhaps. But fortune often favours the brave…


Magnussen and Ericsson come together on Lap 1

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Sauber team principal Monisha Kaltenborn said it was 'incomprehensible' that Haas's Kevin Magnussen wasn't punished by the stewards for his first-lap clash with Marcus Ericsson. The Swede sustained race-wrecking damage in the Turn 3 coming-together, but when you watch the onboards of the clash (and the view from Lance Stroll's Williams), you get an idea of why no action was taken. By making a late overtaking attempt around the outside on a frantic opening lap, Ericsson was always taking a risk - a risk that backfired when Magnussen got his braking wrong, clattered the inside kerb and slid wide.


Palmer threads the needle

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Jolyon Palmer described his Australian Grand Prix experience as 'a weekend where pretty much everything went wrong' - but for a fleeting moment on Lap 1 things were looking up. As you can see in the video, after making a decent enough getaway, the Briton was extremely tentative into Turn 1 - perhaps as a result of the braking problems that would soon put him out of the race, but more likely as a deliberate tactic to avoid potential trouble. Why do we say that? Well, because there was nothing cautious about his approach to the next sequence of bends, as he skilfully edged his Renault through the miniscule gap between Stoffel Vandoorne's McLaren and Antonio Giovinazzi's Sauber. Heart in mouth stuff.


Blunting the Silver Arrows

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If it was clear in the first few laps that Mercedes had a fight on their hands, it became apparent the moment Lewis Hamilton pitted first that victory might slip away from the world champions. The crunch moment, of course, would come when Sebastian Vettel pitted - with the key question being whether he would come out in front of Hamilton. Delayed behind Max Verstappen's Red Bull, the Briton could only watch in agony as the Ferrari emerged from the pits with track position, the smallest of margins once again proving the difference between ecstasy and agony...


Ocon prevails in three-way thriller

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Fernando Alonso could count himself unlucky to be on the losing end of a thrilling fight for the final point in Australia. The Spaniard had once again dragged every ounce of performance from his McLaren, withstanding Esteban Ocon's efforts to pass for almost the duration of the race - but as Renault's Nico Hulkenberg joined the train, things came to a dramatic climax. Alonso batted away another spirited attack from Ocon's Force India at the penultimate turn, but the pair touched, allowing Hulkenberg to close in - and setting up a dramatic three-way drag to the first corner…


Questa e per noi!

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It's been a while since Sebastian Vettel has had cause to break out the celebratory Italian, but the wait came to an end in style in Australia - prompting these emotional scenes in the cockpit of the SF70H. It wasn't just the German gripped by the fever of victory, as his Ferrari crew and thousands of the fans around the circuit cheered the emphatic return of Ferrari as a winning force in F1 racing.


Palmer's Renault drops anchor

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F1 drivers are used to having to react quickly to external events - as Palmer demonstrated so aptly on Lap 1. But a dozen laps later his adrenaline was surging once more for all the wrong reasons as the brakes on his Renault caught, leaving him suddenly floundering out on the racing line. Renault urged him on, and the issue seemed to abate temporarily - but when it struck again on Palmer's 16th lap, the writing was on the wall.