Top-10 finish for Sutil and Resta, Hamilton wins Abu Dhabi GP

Top-10 finish for Sutil and Resta, Hamilton wins Abu Dhabi GP

Force India earned six points to take its tally to 57 and increase the gap with nearest rival Sauber by 15 points, with just one race left in the calender.

Disaster struck world champion Sebastian Vettel as he was forced to retire in lap two due to engine failure, soon after suffering a tyre puncture in the opening lap between turn one and two at the sparkling Yas Marina Circuit.

Vettel's shock retirement, first since 2010 Korean GP, helped McLaren's Lewis Hamilton win his third race of the season after starting second from the grid. The Briton is the only racer other than Vettel to triumph at Abu Dhabi GP as the German had won the inaugural edition in 2009 and then last year.

Hamilton was followed by Ferrari's Fernando Alonso and teammate Jenson Button. Vettel's retirement helped Sutil and Di Resta move up a place from the original grid positions right from the start.

Sutil put a lot of pressure on Michael Schumacher of Mercedes and Di Resta was locked in an intense battle for ninth place with Toro Rosso's Sebastian Buemi, who eventually retired later.

The Scot managed to move to eight place but was easily overtaken by Schumacher in lap 20 on straight. Di Resta opted a one pit-stop strategy and took it in lap 28. He rejoined the race in the 12th only to re-gain his P9.

Sutil took his second pit-stop in lap 36 and surrendered his seventh position to Schumacher when he joined back. The two Force India drivers kept their positions till the end to finish in the top-10 bracket.

"A mega-job, mega, as always," said Hamilton on team radio at the end. "I want to dedicate this one to my mum on her birthday and it is great having her here this weekend."

Starting from a record-equalling 14th pole position of the season, Vettel made a clean start when the lights went out and pulled clear of Hamilton and into the lead. The field behind him rushed unscathed into racing order behind him.

Having won both previous Grands Prix held at the Yas Marina circuit, it looked like business as usual for the 24-year-old German, but only for a few hundred metres as a puncture pitched him out of control and off the circuit as he turned into Turn Two.
The right rear tyre of Vettel's Red Bull machine deflated rapidly and, although he was able to recover and nurse the car back to the pits, it signalled the end and his first retirement in more than a year since the Korean Grand Prix of 2010.

Vettel climbed from his car and was soon tapping into a laptop computer to discover precisely why it happened, but by then the leaders were completing lap three with Hamilton leading the field by nearly three seconds.

Alonso, having swept past Webber and Button, was in second place with Button third, Webber fourth and Massa fifth. Rosberg had climbed to sixth in the opening skirmishes, fighting his way past Mercedes team-mate Schumacher.

This running order was maintained as, having started in high sunshine and temperatures close to 40 degrees Celsius, the sun began to fall and the floodlights to take over. The temperature fell swiftly, too.