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Hamilton leads 1-2 finish for Mercedes at Australian GP

MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) — Lewis Hamilton beat teammate Nico Rosberg in a one-two finish for Mercedes at the Australian Grand Prix on Sunday, as the team extended it 2014 dominance into the opening race of the new Formula One season.

Hamilton led from start to finish and beat Rosberg by 1.3 seconds at the Albert Park circuit, with Sebastian Vettel finishing third in his first race for Ferrari.

A series of pre-race incidents meant only 15 cars started the race, and only 11 finished, with McLaren’s Jenson Button last and the only driver not to receive championship points.

Williams driver Felipe Massa finished fourth and Felipe Nasr was fifth for Sauber, providing some good news for that team after a week of legal battles. Nasr’s fifth was the best finish by a driver on debut since Hamilton finished third in this race in 2007.

Local favorite Daniel Ricciardo was sixth in a disappointing race for Red Bull, which clearly has not solved the issues with its Renault engine.

Force India drivers Nico Hulkenberg and Sergio Perez were seventh and tenth in a good finish by a team which made a very late start to its season preparations.

Sauber’s Marcus Ericsson was eighth — the first championship points for a Swede in 26 years — and Toro Rosso’s Carlos Sainz Jr. was ninth on debut.

Williams driver Valtteri Bottas was ruled out of the race by a back injury suffered in qualifying, while the McLaren of Kevin Magnussen and the Red Bull of Daniil Kvyat both suffered engine failures on the installation lap and did not start.

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