Rosberg takes the positives from his Canada defeat

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Nico Rosberg has been quick to look on the bright side after losing out to Daniel Ricciardo in the race to win the Canadian Grand Prix today.

Rosberg led most of the grand prix in Montreal, and was initially battling with Mercedes teammate Lewis Hamilton at the front of the field. However, both cars were struck by an internal problem which left them down on power. The issue was so bad for Hamilton that he had to retire, but Rosberg kept going and managed to stay in the lead until the third to last lap when Ricciardo fought his way past to claim his first grand prix victory.

“That was a big battle all the way through today,” Rosberg explained. “I had a tough start but I was able to defend in the first few corners and fight against Lewis. The race went smoothly for a while then both cars suddenly lost the MGU-K system and a lot of power which was really tough. Then I lost some time in the second pit stop which let Lewis jump me and I was struggling to cool the rear brakes down so it was all happening.

“Towards the end of the race, I tried to defend against Sergio [Perez] which was fine but Daniel was too fast on the straights with much more power than I had available and he was able to get past.”

However, he is pleased to have limited the damage and come away from Canada with 18 points, giving him a 22 point lead in the drivers’ championship ahead of Hamilton.

“With so much going on, I had to ask my engineer where I finished at the end as I thought I was probably about fifth or sixth,” Rosberg explained. “I was so happy to hear that I was in P2!

“They are important points for me in the championship, so it was a tough but ultimately good day.”

Mercedes remains the team to beat in Formula 1 despite today’s result, and Rosberg will be looking to extend his championship lead at the next race in Austria (22 June). Today though, the glory lies with Ricciardo following his first race win.

F1 2017 driver review: Sergio Perez

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Sergio Perez

Team: Sahara Force India
Car No.: 11
Races: 20
Wins: 0
Podiums: 0
Best Finish: P4 (Spain)
Pole Positions: 0
Fastest Laps: 1
Points: 100
Championship Position: 7th

While failing to hit the podium as he did in both 2015 and 2016, Sergio Perez once again finished the year as Formula 1’s leading midfield team driver, but faced a greater fight from within Force India in the shape of Esteban Ocon.

Perez has long been knocking on the door of F1’s top teams should an opportunity come up, and 2017 saw him continue his solid if unspectacular form. The dominance of Mercedes, Red Bull and Ferrari meant any finish higher than seventh was impressive, something he managed to do on five occasions.

But there were some missed opportunities along the way, most significantly in Baku. Force India had been quick all weekend, with Perez charging to sixth on the grid, and when drama struck at the front, he and teammate Ocon were eyeing a podium finish as a minimum.

Contact between the two forced Perez to retire and prompted Ocon to pit for repairs, leaving the team without the top-three finish it targeted heading into the season. With Lance Stroll taking P3 for Williams and Daniel Ricciardo winning the race, a maiden victory for Force India was not out of the realm of imagination.

Perez and Ocon came to blows on a number of occasions, with the final straw coming in Spa when they twice touched on-track, prompting Force India to introduce team orders. Perez finished the year 13 points clear of Ocon in the final standings, meeting his own pre-season target of 100 points, yet the Frenchman had arguably made the bigger impression at Force India through his first full season in F1.

Force India remains the top underdog in F1 with Perez spearheading its charge, but it is difficult to see either taking the final step to becoming true contenders at the front of the field anytime soon, as solid as their displays have been.

Season High: P4 in Spain after retirements for the ‘big three’.

Season Low: Losing a sure-fire podium, if not a win, in Baku after contact with Ocon.