|2017 Russian Grand Prix|
|Race 4 of 20 in the 2017 Formula One World Championship|
Layout of the Sochi Autodrom
|Date||30 April 2017|
|Official name||2017 Formula 1 VTB Russian Grand Prix|
Adlersky City District, Sochi, Krasnodar Krai, Russia
|Course||Permanent racing facility|
|Course length||5.848 km (3.633 mi)|
|Distance||52 laps, 304.096 km (188.956 mi)|
|Scheduled distance||53 laps, 309.745 km (192.466 mi)|
|Time||1:36.844 on lap 49|
The 2017 Russian Grand Prix (Russian: ?- 2017 ?, romanized: Gran-pri Rossii 2017 goda), officially known as the 2017 Formula 1 VTB Russian Grand Prix, was a Formula One motor race that took place on 30 April 2017 as the fourth round of the 2017 FIA Formula One World Championship. The fifty-two lap race was held at the Sochi Autodrom, marking the fourth running of the Russian Grand Prix as a round of the Formula One World Championship. Sebastian Vettel started the race from pole, with his teammate Kimi Räikkönen in second in Ferrari's first front-row lockout since the 2008 French Grand Prix. Valtteri Bottas won the race by 0.617 seconds over Vettel, the smallest winning margin since the 2016 Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.
Going into the race, Vettel led Lewis Hamilton in the World Drivers' Championship by seven points, with Bottas third; they remained in the same order after the race. In the World Constructors' Championship, Ferrari was in the lead ahead of Mercedes before the race, with Red Bull Racing third; Mercedes was ahead of Ferrari after the race.
The initial start was aborted, as Fernando Alonso was unable to start, pulling up in the opening to the pit lane because of engine issues. Team radio from the initial parade lap suggested issues with the MGU-K electronic power supplementary unit leading to a loss of hybrid power. Without the energy recovery system (ERS), the MCL32 would be uncompetitive and racing would put an unnecessary wear upon the rest of the power unit. Alonso's McLaren teammate Stoffel Vandoorne had already been given a 15-place grid penalty, having exceeded the limit of four exchanges of power unit per driver and car throughout the season stipulated by the 2017 regulations. With Alonso's car already being at least partially on its fourth power unit of the season on only race 4 out of 20, in the light of the charge failure, a decision was made to retire Alonso from the race in order to preserve the car. Alonso was unable to even complete the formation lap, suffering from a total car failure before being able to return to the pitlane. Carlos Sainz Jr. was given a 3-place penalty as a result of causing a collision with Lance Stroll at the Bahrain Grand Prix.
Because of Alonso's car obstructing the track, the start was aborted by the FIA's race director Charlie Whiting, and the cars were sent on an additional formation lap. The race was accordingly shortened by a lap. Valtteri Bottas attained his maiden victory after taking first place at the start, passing both Ferraris before turn 2 - aided by starting from the clean side of the grid, and picking up the slipstream behind Vettel. Hamilton attempted the same, but was squeezed on both sides by the Ferrari of Räikkönen, now running 3rd - and Ricciardo of Red Bull, challenging for 4th from 5th. This caused him to be held up and hemmed into his starting grid position, where he would stay for the remainder of the race. Vettel meanwhile pulled away from tight racing of the main straight, and pursued Bottas. Vettel briefly led the race when Bottas went into the pits following his one-stop strategy, but then lost his position again after his own pit stop. He again spent the final third of the race gradually closing the distance between himself and Bottas, coming to within 0.7 seconds just a few laps before the end. Lapped traffic, particularly the delayed Williams of Massa, however, ultimately prevented him from overtaking the race leader, leading to a secure second place for the German. Kimi Räikkönen rounded off the podium. He once again set a late fastest lap of 1:36.844 on lap 49, recording not only the fast lap of the race, but also the fastest ever lap at the circuit. At the chequered flag, he was followed by Lewis Hamilton, finishing a distant 4th. Hamilton had struggled with overheating throughout the race.
Non-finishers were Fernando Alonso, who failed to make it to the grid with a hybrid-charge failure, as well as Jolyon Palmer and Romain Grosjean who crashed on the first lap, causing a safety car deployment. Daniel Ricciardo retired with brake problems while running in 7th. Felipe Massa was running in 6th when he obtained a slow puncture and had to pit for new tyres, falling to 9th behind the Force Indias of Sergio Pérez and Esteban Ocon as well as the Renault of Nico Hülkenberg.
There were very few on-track overtakes after the safety car period. Despite making up two places before turn 2, Max Verstappen's Red Bull did not advance further, finishing in 5th, a minute behind Bottas, once again showing Red Bull's struggles to keep up with Ferrari and Mercedes. The team's problems were compounded by the retirement of Daniel Ricciardo, their third mechanical failure in four races.
|5||3||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull Racing-TAG Heuer||1:35.560||1:35.483||1:34.905||5|
|9||11||Sergio Pérez||Force India-Mercedes||1:36.185||1:35.513||1:35.337||9|
|10||31||Esteban Ocon||Force India-Mercedes||1:35.372||1:35.729||1:35.430||10|
|11||55||Carlos Sainz Jr.||Toro Rosso||1:35.827||1:35.948||141|
|13||26||Daniil Kvyat||Toro Rosso||1:35.984||1:35.968||12|
|107% time: 1:40.623|
|6||11||Sergio Pérez||Force India-Mercedes||52||+1:26.788||9||8|
|7||31||Esteban Ocon||Force India-Mercedes||52||+1:35.004||10||6|
|9||19||Felipe Massa||Williams-Mercedes||51||+1 Lap||6||2|
|10||55||Carlos Sainz Jr.||Toro Rosso||51||+1 Lap||14||1|
|11||18||Lance Stroll||Williams-Mercedes||51||+1 Lap||11|
|12||26||Daniil Kvyat||Toro Rosso||51||+1 Lap||12|
|13||20||Kevin Magnussen||Haas-Ferrari||51||+1 Lap||13|
|15||9||Marcus Ericsson||Sauber-Ferrari||51||+1 Lap||18|
|16||94||Pascal Wehrlein||Sauber-Ferrari||50||+2 Laps||17|
|Ret||3||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull Racing-TAG Heuer||5||Brakes||5|