Verstappen takes lights-to-flag Spanish GP win; Mercedes on podium

    Mercedes showed resurgent form in Spain, with both Hamilton and Russell on the podium as Ferrari continues to struggle.

    Published On Jun 04, 2023 09:25:00 PM

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    Max Verstappen put on another dominant display to win the Spanish GP and claim his 40th F1 race victory. This puts him just one win short of Ayrton Senna’s tally. Mercedes’ updated W14 showed much-improved form, with Lewis Hamilton finishing second ahead of his teammate George Russell.

    1. Verstappen wins, 24.090 secs ahead of Hamilton
    2. Russell goes from P12 to P3
    3. Perez trails Verstappen by 53 points

    Verstappen cruises to Spanish GP victory

    The Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya featured a revised layout this year, with the earlier Turns 14-15 chicane removed to return the section to its original layout. This tweak delivered plenty of overtaking action throughout the field, but there was no contest out at front.

    Starting from pole position, Verstappen aced the start, despite being on mediums, compared to Carlos Sainz on soft tyres behind him. The Red Bull driver delivered a commanding drive, leading every single lap to claim his fifth win so far this season. He did, however, narrowly escape a penalty after collecting a number of infringements for exceeding track limits.

    Mercedes scores double podium

    The Spanish GP gave Mercedes its first real chance to see what its updated car is capable of. Barcelona has traditionally been a strong venue for Mercedes, and it proved the same once again.

    Hamilton survived a first-lap clash with McLaren’s Lando Norris to eventually finish second. Russell crossed the line behind him in third place, battling his way up from 12th on the grid. After a poor qualifying session that saw him start P11, Sergio Perez managed to do some damage control and finished the race fourth.

    Home hero Carlos Sainz was unable to convert his P2 starting position into a podium finish and had to settle for fifth place. Both Ferrari drivers still appear to be struggling with their car, and Sainz slipped down the field as the race went on. His teammate Charles Leclerc finished just outside the points in P11. He started from the pitlane after Ferrari opted to change his gearbox and other components following a disastrous qualifying session that left him in P19.

    Lance Stroll finished sixth, ahead of his Aston Martin teammate Fernando Alonso. They were followed by Alpine’s Esteban Ocon. A five-second time penalty handed to Yuki Tsunoda (for forcing Zhou Guanyu off the track) dropped the AlphaTauri driver to 12th place. This promoted Zhou to ninth and Pierre Gasly to 10th.

    McLaren’s Lando Norris started the race with high spirits, given his P3 starting position. But his race quickly derailed after opening lap contact with Hamilton forced him to pit for a new front wing. He ended up finishing down in 17th place.

    2023 F1 championship standings

    Verstappen now extends his championship lead to 53 points (that’s over two race wins) from Perez. Alonso remains third overall, 18 points behind Perez.

    The next race is the Canadian GP on June 16-18.

    2023 Spanish GP results

    2023 Spanish GP results
    PosDriverTeam
    1Max VerstappenRed Bull Racing
    2Lewis HamiltonMercedes
    3George RussellMercedes
    4Sergio PerezRed Bull Racing
    5Carlos SainzFerrari
    6Lance StrollAston Martin
    7Fernando AlonsoAston Martin
    8Esteban OconAlpine
    9Zhou GuanyuAlfa Romeo
    10Pierre GaslyAlpine
    11Charles LeclercFerrari
    12Yuki TsunodaAlphaTauri
    13Oscar PiastriMcLaren
    14Nyck de VriesAlphaTauri
    15Nico HulkenbergHaas
    16Alex AlbonWilliams
    17Lando NorrisMcLaren
    18Kevin MagnussenHaas
    19Valtteri BottasAlfa Romeo
    20Logan SargeantWilliams

    Also see:

    Verstappen wins Monaco GP in mixed conditions; Alpine on podium

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