Home Sports F1: Max Verstappen wins Qatar Grand Prix 

F1: Max Verstappen wins Qatar Grand Prix 


Mercedes drivers Lewis Hamilton and George Russell collided at the start before Max Verstappen went on to dominate the Qatar Grand Prix.

Channel 1

The crash caused Hamilton’s retirement and dropped Russell to the back of the field, from where he fought back in impressive fashion to finish fourth.

McLaren’s Oscar Piastri and Lando Norris took second and third after holding position in the final stages.

Verstappen was in total control after clinching his third title on Saturday.

The Dutchman led throughout from pole position, although he did lose the lead after his first stop, mandated by rules restricting tyre mileage as a result of safety concerns.

All the teams were restricted to a maximum of 18 laps on each set of tyres after Pirelli discovered its product was vulnerable to failure at high speed over the kerbs at the Lusail circuit.

That led to a staccato race in which it took time for the order to settle down, all drivers forced to make at least three pit stops by the tyre-mileage limits.

Williams’ Alex Albon led the race after Verstappen had made his first pit stop, a situation partly influenced by an early safety car deployed to recover Hamilton’s damaged Mercedes.

But as the strategies evened out over a race distance, Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc took fifth place behind Verstappen, Piastri, Norris and Russell.

Leclerc capitalised on an error by Aston Martin’s Fernando Alonso, who ran wide off the circuit at about half distance and lost out to the Ferrari.

Alonso, struggling with a seat that was burning him, held on for sixth ahead of Alpine’s Esteban Ocon and Alfa Romeo’s Valtteri Bottas.

Red Bull’s Sergio Perez finished ninth on the road after starting from the pit lane following a crash in Saturday’s spring, his race hampered by two five-second penalties for exceeding track limits.

But the Mexican’s race was hampered by two five-second penalties for exceeding track limits, the first served at a pit stop and the second imposed at the end, demoting him to 10th behind Alfa Romeo’s Zhou Guanyu.





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