|2018 French Grand Prix|
|Race 8 of 21 in the 2018 Formula One World Championship|
Layout of the Circuit Paul Ricard
|Date||24 June 2018|
|Official name||Formula 1 Pirelli Grand Prix de France 2018|
Circuit Paul Ricard|
Le Castellet, Provence-Alpes-Côte d'Azur, France
|Course||Permanent racing circuit|
|Course length||5.842 km (3.630 mi)|
|Distance||53 laps, 309.690 km (192.432 mi)|
|Weather||Partially cloudy, warm and dry|
|Time||1:34.225 on lap 41|
The 2018 French Grand Prix (formally known as the Formula 1 Pirelli Grand Prix de France 2018) was a Formula One motor race that took place on 24 June 2018 at the Circuit Paul Ricard in Le Castellet, France. The race was the eighth round of the 2018 FIA Formula One World Championship and marked the first time that the French Grand Prix has been run since 2008. It was the 87th running of the French Grand Prix, and the 59th time the event had been included as a round of the Formula One World Championship since the inception of the series in 1950.
Ferrari driver Sebastian Vettel entered the race with a one-point lead over Lewis Hamilton in the World Drivers' Championship. In the World Constructors' Championship, Mercedes led Ferrari by seventeen points. Hamilton took the lead in the Driver's Championship by winning the race, with Vettel finishing fifth.
The race returned to the calendar for the first time since 2008, with Circuit Paul Ricard chosen as the venue. The circuit last hosted the French Grand Prix in 1990 before the event moved to the Circuit de Nevers Magny-Cours in 1991. The race used the 5.842 km (3.630 mi) layout of the Circuit Paul Ricard for the first time. The layout includes a chicane on the Mistral straight as opposed to the 5.809 km (3.610 mi) circuit that was used nine times between 1971 and 1985.[note 1]
The race was run in June, filling a vacancy left by the Azerbaijan Grand Prix. The race in Azerbaijan was moved to an April date to avoid clashing with celebrations for the centenary of the Azerbaijan Democratic Republic.
Tyre supplier Pirelli provided teams with the soft, supersoft and ultrasoft compounds of tyres. They reverted to their narrow tread compound following feedback from the teams in the wake of mid-season testing at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya.
Lewis Hamilton set the fastest lap in the first free practice session, which was cut short by an accident involving Sauber driver Marcus Ericsson. Ericsson lost control of his Sauber C37 on the approach to Turn 11 and spun into the barrier on the outside of the corner. The car hit the tyre wall at an angle and subsequently caught fire. Ericsson was unharmed, but with two minutes remaining the session was abandoned and the damage to his car so extensive that he was unable to take part in the second free practice session. Several drivers experienced spins during the session, most notably at Turn 6 where an intermittent and gusty local wind caught the drivers unaware as they accelerated away from the apex of the corner. Unlike Ericsson, all of the drivers avoided contact with the wall courtesy of the circuit's unique, abrasive tarmac run-off areas designed to slow down cars that left the circuit.
Hamilton was fastest again in the second free practice session despite having his flying lap interrupted by another red flag. Sergio Pérez lost a wheel as he turned onto the Mistral Straight, prompting race officials to mount an investigation as to whether Force India had released Pérez from the pit lane with his car in an unsafe condition. The session was restarted once Pérez's car was cleared away.
|4||33||Max Verstappen||Red Bull Racing-TAG Heuer||1:31.531||1:30.818||1:30.705||4|
|5||3||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull Racing-TAG Heuer||1:31.910||1:31.538||1:30.895||5|
|7||55||Carlos Sainz Jr.||Renault||1:32.394||1:32.016||1:32.126||7|
|10||8||Romain Grosjean||Haas-Ferrari||1:32.083||1:31.472||No time||10|
|11||31||Esteban Ocon||Force India-Mercedes||1:32.786||1:32.075||11|
|13||11||Sergio Pérez||Force India-Mercedes||1:32.692||1:32.454||13|
|14||10||Pierre Gasly||Scuderia Toro Rosso-Honda||1:32.447||1:32.460||14|
|107% time: 1:37.659|
At the start Sebastian Vettel ran into the back of Valtteri Bottas, with both sustaining damage and having to pit for repairs, also there was a separate collison between Pierre Gasly and Esteban Ocon leaving both cars stranded out on the track, this brought out a brief safety car period lasting till the end of Lap 4. Vettel would later receive a penalty for his collision with Bottas which meant he would only manage to finish 5th. Lance Stroll suffered a tyre puncture near the end of the race causing a virtual safety car, which ended with only half a lap left of the race. Lewis Hamilton comfortably won ahead of Max Verstappen, while Kimi Räikkönen completed the podium.
|2||33||Max Verstappen||Red Bull Racing-TAG Heuer||53||+7.090||4||18|
|4||3||Daniel Ricciardo||Red Bull Racing-TAG Heuer||53||+34.736||5||12|
|8||55||Carlos Sainz Jr.||Renault||53||+1:27.184||7||4|
|11||8||Romain Grosjean||Haas-Ferrari||52||+1 lap||10|
|13||9||Marcus Ericsson||Sauber-Ferrari||52||+1 lap||15|
|14||28||Brendon Hartley||52||+1 lap||20|
|15||35||Sergey Sirotkin||Williams-Mercedes||52||+1 lap1||18|
|Ret||11||Sergio Pérez||Force India-Mercedes||27||Engine||13|
|Ret||31||Esteban Ocon||Force India-Mercedes||0||Collision||11|
|Ret||10||Pierre Gasly||Scuderia Toro Rosso-Honda||0||Collision||14|