Lewis Hamilton took his maiden victory in Montreal, delivering on the promise he had shown all season and mastering the Gilles Villeneuve circuit on his first visit to the Canadian venue.
Hamilton won by four seconds from Nick Heidfeld's BMW Sauber on a day when there were fears for the safety of Heidfeld's team-mate Robert Kubica who suffered a monster accident while trying to pass Jarno Trulli (Toyota).
In a race with four safety car interventions, Hamilton remained in charge all the way, his only concern coming at the start when team-mate Fernando Alonso tried to get a run on him at the first corner but ran out of road and speared over the grass. "I thought, this is my opportunity," said Hamilton. "I just got on with it. To be honest, it was a fairly simple race really."
When Adrian Sutil's Force India clobbered the wall, a safety car was deployed and Alonso (and Nico Rosberg's Williams) pitted just as the safety car joined the track. That broke a regulation so both were handed 10-second stop-go penalties, hurting their afternoons. Alonso fell to 14th after a second safety car period caused by Kubica's huge accident - from which he emerged unscathed.
Hamilton had another safety car period to contend with, triggered by Vitantonio Liuzzi's Toro Rosso hitting the wall (and losing third place) but he coped impeccably to score his first win from Heidfeld and Alexander Wurz who escaped the mayhem to take points for Williams.
Heikki Kovalainen secured fourth for Renault ahead of a subdued Kimi Raikkonen (Ferrari). The second Ferrari of Felipe Massa was excluded for ignoring a red light as he exited the pit lane.
Hamilton was already causing speculation that he could do the unthinkable - win the championship in his first year. Damon Hill commented that "People should not underestimate what he has achieved in a short space of time". Despite almost universal recognition Alonso commented that Hamilton had been "very lucky" to have won and did not even congratulate his team mate after the race.