Vettel's drought-breaker for Ferrari sets up F1 duel in 2017

MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) With Sebastian Vettel ascending the top of the podium in his red Ferrari race suit, the new regulations for Formula One cars seemingly needed only one Grand Prix to produce one of the desired effects.

Vettel's drought-breaking win for Ferrari was widely celebrated, with Mercedes drivers Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas having to settle for second and third. Mercedes won 19 of the 21 F1 GPs in 2016, and Red Bull collected the other two titles.

Ferrari's first win in Australia since 2007 has already given 2017 a different complexion. Kimi Raikkonen, who won for Ferrari a decade before, placed fourth on Sunday as Ferrari earned a four-point cushion over Mercedes in the constructors' standings after the first of 20 rounds.

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Formula 1 Leaders: Points
RankDriverPointsWins
1 S.Vettel 25 1
2 L.Hamilton 18 0
3 V.Bottas 15 0
4 K.Raikkonen 12 0
5 M.Verstappen 10 0
6 F.Massa 8 0
7 S.Perez 6 0
8 C.Sainz Jr. 4 0
9 D.Kvyat 2 0
10 E.Ocon 1 0
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