Monday, June 17, 2024

Max Verstappen eases to F1 Canadian GP win

Max Verstappen moved level with Ayrton Senna’s tally of 41 Grand Prix wins after victory in Sunday’s Formula 1 Canadian Grand Prix, here.

Starting from pole position after a brilliant performance in Saturday’s wet qualifying session, Verstappen held off the threat of Fernando Alonso at the start, and never looked threatened as he managed the gap to those behind him throughout the race to take Red Bull’s 100th Grand Prix win.

“Very happy right now. It was not a very straightforward race, as the tyres were not getting into their window. It was very cold compared to Friday, but we made it work and to win the 100th GP for the team is pretty incredible,” said Verstappen afterwards.

Behind Verstappen, Alonso finished second for Aston Martin after a good overtaking move on Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton, who took third.

The Ferraris of Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz recovered from a poor qualifying session to finish fourth and fifth, ahead of the second Red Bull of Sergio Perez, who also notched the bonus point for fastest lap, though the Mexican may be concerned at yet another weekend where he was off the pace of his illustrious teammate, Xinhua reported.

Alex Albon continued his good form from Saturday’s qualifying to finish in an excellent seventh place, scoring Williams’ best result in almost two years after withstanding heavy pressure from the cars behind him.

Esteban Ocon took eighth for Alpine, with Aston Martin’s Lance Stroll taking ninth place on the line from Valtteri Bottas, who rounded out the points for Alfa Romeo.

The two retirees were Logan Sargeant, who pulled off on Lap 6 with an engine issue, and George Russell, who retired with brake issues after having clouted the wall earlier in the race.

Verstappen’s win puts him on 195 points and gives him a 69-point advantage over second-placed Perez, with no driver in F1 history ever having overhauled such a lead. Alonso stays third with 117 points.

In the Constructors’ Championship, Red Bull’s lead now stands at 321 points, with the drinks-backed outfit having won all eight races so far this season. Mercedes are second on 167 points, with Aston Martin third on 154.

The ninth round of the 2023 F1 World Championship is the Austrian Grand Prix at the Red Bull Ring on July 2.

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