Russian Grand Prix: Mercedes Racer Valtteri Bottas Wins His First F1 Race

Mercedes Racer Valtteri Bottas held off a late charge from Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel in the Russian Grand Prix to take his first  Formula 1 win.

Bottas skipped Vettel and partner Kimi Raikkonen at the start from his third position on the grid and commanded the race until the closing stages, when Vettel used a late shift stop to close up and pressure the Finn.

The four-time boss closed up to within a second and a half of Bottas with 10 laps top go but the Finn countered and kept Vettel at arm's length for the rest of the race.

The 27-year-old team-mate Lewis Hamilton capped a painful weekend with a race to forget and finished only fourth behind Ferrari's Kimi Raikkonen.

Valtteri Bottas, who finished first: "It's been quite a while, more than 80 races, but worth the wait, well worth the learning curve.

"This strange opportunity came to me over the winter and I have to thank the team for making this possible."

Sebastian Vettel, who finished second: "I tried everything to catch Valtteri. I thought there would be an opportunity on the back straight.

"I thought there was an opportunity but I was not sure what Felipe Massa would do and ended up losing out."

Kimi Raikkonen, third: "Unfortunately today we could only get third place but we'll try for better next time."

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