- Max Verstappen increased his lead in the championship race this year to 53 points on Sunday after winning in the Spanish Grand Prix.
- Mercedes duo of Hamilton and Russels finished off the podium places to seal a successful race for the team.
Max Verstappen increased his lead in the championship race this year to 53 points on Sunday after piloting his Red Bull to an expert win in the Spanish Grand Prix.
Mercedes duo of Hamilton and Russels finished off the podium places to seal a successful race for the team.
With teammate Sergio Perez out of the top three, the pole-sitter increased his lead over the Mexican driver to 53 points as he won the race and collected 25 points.
Verstappen Fast Start
Verstappen got off to a fast start, taking the lead from Carlos Sainz, Lando Norris, and Lewis Hamilton. Charles Leclerc, whose SF-23 had set-up adjustments during the course of the previous night, lined up in the pit lane.
Verstappen was challenged by Sainz at Turn 1, but he wasn’t quite able to pull level.
Hamilton and Norris collided forcing the McLaren driver to pit early for a front-wing change.
George Russell gained five positions in a maneuver that the stewards noted as he left the race line to do so, but they did not levy a penalty.
Verstappen held a lead of 4.8 seconds after 10 laps of the 66-lap race, while teammate Sergio Perez had moved up to eighth after passing Tsunoda and starting to pursue Alonso in seventh. With the Mercedes driver employing DRS into the final curve to get the necessary straight-line speed, Russell quickly past Ocon to take fifth place just in front of them.
Verstappen was ahead of Hamilton by 13.7 seconds at the halfway point, while Hamilton was six seconds ahead of Sainz and extending his lead. On lap 35, Russell, who was running in fourth place, overtook the Spaniard at Turn One while braking, confirming the silver arrows’ outright speed.
On lap 53, Verstappen made his last pit stop and switched to soft tires to finish the race after complaining of skidding on his worn hard tires. When he rejoined for his cruise to the finish line, he was more than 16 seconds ahead of Hamilton.
A black and white flag for violating track restrictions three times put Max Verstappen in the most danger.
However, the five-second timeout he would have received for repeating the offense would not have changed anything.
Verstappen has won five of the season’s first seven races, and with the RB19 looking unbreakable in his hands, attention will turn to whether he can equal or surpass the record 15 victories he collected in 2022.
Mercedes was forced to make their long-awaited modifications public in Monaco at the distinctive street track where it was nearly impossible to evaluate the changes after the Emilia-Romagna Grand Prix was canceled earlier this month due to floods in northern Italy.
Due to the team’s decision to drop the “zero-sidepod” idea and the addition of a new floor, rear suspension, and diffuser, there was a great deal of curiosity about how the W14 would perform when it arrived in Barcelona.
It wasn’t clear how much progress had been made up until Sunday, but the outcomes were precisely what Hamilton had hoped for following the disappointment of the early season when he claimed to be “counting the days” until the improvements.