Verstappen dominates 2021 Formula One Styrian Grand Prix

Red Bull Racing’s Max Verstappen cruised to victory on Sunday at the Styrian Grand Prix, held at Austria’s Red Bull Ring.

Verstappen started the race on pole and was never really unsettled, despite Mercedes-Benz AMG’s Lewis Hamilton starting next to him. Hamilton eventually crossed the finish line in second, a distant 35 seconds behind Verstappen.

Fellow Mercedes driver Valtteri Bottas finished third, some 47 seconds behind. It was a respectable finish for Bottas who started the race at fifth on the grid after receiving a penalty for spinning in the pit lane during Friday’s practice. It wasn’t easy as he had to survive a late charge from Red Bull’s Sergio Perez who had to settle for fourth at the finish. McLaren’s Lando Norris rounded out the top five.

Verstappen managed to build a six-second lead early in the race, which allowed his team to react to any attempts by other teams, namely Mercedes, to play with pit strategy. Verstappen waited one lap after Hamilton to make his one and only stop of the race, and easily maintained his place at the front of the grid afterward.

After eventually giving up on challenging Verstappen, Hamilton made a second pit stop late in the race to grab fresh tires in what turned out to be a successful bid to score a bonus point for the fastest lap.

There were few dramas in the race, though Williams’ George Russell was forced to retire with a power unit issue, after showing some early promise and rising to eighth position. And AlphaTauri’s Pierre Gasly was out on the first lap, after contact with Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc.

With his latest win, Verstappen widened his lead in the 2021 Drivers’ Championship. He now sits on 156 points versus the 138 of Hamilton and 96 of Perez. In the Constructors’ Championship, Red Bull leads with 252 points versus the 212 of Mercedes and 120 of McLaren. Teams now stay in place for this coming weekend’s Austrian Grand Prix at the Red Bull Ring.

In other F1 news, Hamilton revealed that he has started contract talks with Mercedes, meaning there’s no retirement in sight for the 36-year-old. Current contracts for both Hamilton and Bottas end after this season, and Hamilton in particular is likely keen to put at least one more championship under his belt to beat the tally of seven that he shares with Michael Schumacher, if he doesn’t achieve it in the current season.

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2021 Formula One Styrian Grand Prix

2021 Formula One Styrian Grand Prix

Below are the full results from the 2021 Formula One Styrian Grand Prix:

1) Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing
2) Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes-Benz AMG +35.743 seconds
3) Valtteri Bottas, Mercedes-Benz AMG +46.907 seconds
4) Sergio Perez, Red Bull Racing +47.434 seconds
5) Lando Norris, McLaren +1 lap
6) Carlos Sainz, Ferrari +1 lap
7) Charles Leclerc, Ferrari +1 lap
8) Lance Stroll, Aston Martin +1 lap
9) Fernando Alonso, Alpine +77.695 seconds
10) Yuki Tsunoda, AlphaTauri +1 lap
11) Kimi Raikkonen, Alfa Romeo +1 lap
12) Sebastian Vettel, Aston Martin +79.666 seconds
13) Daniel Ricciardo, McLaren +75.857 seconds
14) Esteban Ocon, Alpine +1 lap
15) Antonio Giovinazzi, Alfa Romeo +1 lap
16) Mick Schumacher, Haas +2 laps
17) Nicholas Latifi, Williams +3 lap
18) Nikita Mazepin, Haas +3 laps
NC) George Russell, Williams DNF
NC) Pierre Gasly, AlphaTauri DNF

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