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An Emotional Win For Alonso At European Grand Prix

It feels great to win, but it must be even sweeter if its in front of your home crowd. That must be how Fernando Alonso felt when he was first to cross the finish line at this weekend’s European Grand Prix in Valencia.

The Spaniard, driving for Ferrari, came from starting in 11th place to winning the race in front of his fellow countrymen. This makes him the first driver this season to have won more than one race, following his previous victory in Malaysia in March.

Alonso seemed overcome with emotion when he spoke of what the win meant to him. He mentioned his country’s current economic crisis and the fans whom had come to see him. This victory, along with Spain strolling past France to get to the semi final of Euro 2012, has given Spanish sport fans plenty to cheer about. The win has also put Alonso on the top of the leaderboard, ahead of Mark Webber.

Alonso finished the race in first place, in front of Kimi Räikkönen with Lotus-Renault, who was second. The third spot on the podium was taken by veteran Michael Schumacher. He completed the race in the top three for the first time this season. It was quite an achievement for a driver who is, at 43, the oldest formula one driver to finish top three in over 40 years. The last man was Jack Brabham back in 1970. He was the legendary three time Formula One champion from Australia who won back in 1959, 1960 and 1966. Fellow Australian Mark Webber with Red Bull Racing-Renault came in fourth at Valencia, while Nico Hulkenberg, with Force India-Mercedes, was fifth.

Webbers’ Red Bull team mate Sebastian Vettel started the race from pole and headed out infront. There were some that said he had the race in the palm of his hand, having been in the lead by 20 seconds. However, disaster struck when, on the 35th lap, his alternator reportedly failed and he was forced to retire.

However, the hotly tipped Lewis Hamilton ended the race in controversial circumstances. This is when it looked like to some that Venezuelan Pastor Maldonado deliberately crashed into him on turn 12, forcing the Brit against the wall. Hamilton was reportedly clearly furious the incident caused him to retire on the 55th lap. Maldonado, moreover may have initially finished in tenth place, but he was given a 20 second penalty.

All in all it was something of a fiery, emotional European Grand Prix in Valencia. It is now on to the next race of the season, the British Grand Prix at Silverstone, on Sunday the 8th of July 2012.

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