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Max Verstappen wins Spanish Grand Prix with F1 error

Image for article titled Max Verstappen Wins F1 Spanish Grand Prix

Photo: Manu Fernandez / POOL / AFP (beautiful pictures)

Reliability is the story of Formula 1 over the weekend at the Spanish Grand Prix. Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc took pole on Saturday, with his fastest third-quarter lap three-tenths of a second faster than Red Bull’s Max Verstappen. Verstappen aborted his final qualifying run and reported power issues during the session, but the team later said his DRS failed to open.

At the start of the race, the leading duo passed the first corner in the starting order. Ferrari’s Carlos Sainz had a lousy start in third place and was overtaken by both Mercedes’ George Russell and Red Bull’s Sergio Pérez.

Further back, Lewis Hamilton and Kevin Magnussen made contact through a long, deep Turn 3 right-handed serve. Haas’ Magnussen was thrown into a gravel trap, and a tire on Hamilton’s Mercedes was punctured. Both drivers were able to continue, but the extra pit stop sent them back to the end of the course. Hamilton was able to fight his way up to fifth place after the finish.

Turn 4 also proved that there were a few riders leaving early in the race. On 7/6/6, Sainz dashed out into the gravel after his rear wheel lost traction while cornering. In round 9, Verstappen ventured into the same gravel trap while saving his Red Bull from a spin. The defending world champion’s turn from second place seems to have secured the race victory for Leclerc, but the situation will turn out to be dramatic.

On the 27th, Charles Leclerc’s day ended. His Ferrari had an electrical failure, and he was forced to retire from the race. The battle between Russell and Verstappen for second place is now for the race lead. Verstappen was almost stuck behind the Mercedes driver when his Red Bull’s DRS failed to open regularly. Red Bull Racing chose to switch both of their riders to a three-stop strategy. Verstappen pitted to allow Pérez with the active DRS to overtake Russell and take the lead.

Sergio Pérez gave Verstappen the lead after all three stops to maximize Red Bull’s score in the Driver and Builder championship. They crossed the first and second lines without pressure as George Russell finished in distant third. Carlos Sainz took fourth place in the closing lap after the Mercedes informed their drivers to nurse the cars and avoid a possible mechanical failure.

Race results – Top 10

  1. Max Verstappen
  2. Sergio Perez
  3. George Russell
  4. Carlos Sainz
  5. Lewis Hamilton
  6. Valtteri Bottas
  7. Esteban Ocon
  8. Lando Norris
  9. Fernando Alonso
  10. Yuki Tsunoda

Max Verstappen leads in the World Drivers Championship by six points over Charles Leclerc. Formula One will return next week for the Monaco Grand Prix.

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