It was an interesting battle to watch as Hamilton tried to keep ahead of Vettel. The Ferrari kept charging forward to chase Hamilton down and was whittling down time. Hamilton responded with some excellent driving while setting a lap record in response to Vettel. He managed to hold him off and take the checkered flag after starting on the pole.
The real takeaway is that we have some serious competition for Mercedes-AMG this year. Hamilton certainly believes so as he stated as much in his post-race interview. We are only two races in but it seems Hamilton has already decided Vettel is his only challenge to winning the driver's championship. He certainly isn't taking his teammate Valtteri Bottas seriously.
Why would he? Bottas spun his car behind the safety car. That is an embarrassing amateur mistake. It is hard to believe a professional Formula 1 driver would do something so stupid. It clearly reinforced in Hamilton's mind he is the clear number one. Mercedes-AMG calling Valtteri 'Nico' in the radio surely didn't help things.
The best drive of the day arguably came from the 19 year old phenom Max Verstappen. He passed nine cars in a single lap. Yes, nine. He was voted the driver of the day and deservedly so. You can take a look at his opening lap below.
Next up is the Bahrain Grand Prix this week. It will be interesting to see how things shake out.