Max Verstappen won the Formula One F1 – Miami Grand Prix.
On Sunday, Max Verstappen of Red Bull won the first Miami Grand Prix, cutting Ferrari opponent Charles Leclerc’s overall lead from 27 to 19 points after five races.
After starting on pole, Leclerc finished a close second, 3.786 seconds behind, with Spanish teammate Carlos Sainz completing the podium at the Miami Dolphins’ Hard Rock Stadium.
The win was the Dutch driver’s third of the season and second in a straight. He earned it with a key outside move on Sainz to grab the second position at the start before storming past Leclerc on the ninth of 57 laps.
Verstappen seemed to cruise to win until McLaren’s Lando Norris collided with AlphaTauri’s Pierre Gasly and crashed on lap 41, bringing out the safety car.
Over the last ten circuits, Leclerc reduced the distance and came back into contention.
“It was a wonderful Grand Prix,” said Verstappen, who has won every race he has entered this season and was presented with his winner’s trophy by Dan Marino of the Miami Dolphins. “It was pretty physical, but I believe we kept it entertaining to the finish.”
The event brought a star-studded cast, sports legends, and a sold-out audience as Formula One grew popular thanks to the Netflix docu-series “Drive to Survive.”
“It’s been just crazy. I’ve never seen such enthusiasm, excitement, and a massive event, “said Christian Horner, CEO of Red Bull. “I think it’s fantastic that the American audience has tuned in to Formula One… it’s been a fantastic event and, in the end, an entertaining race.”
With the safety car bunching up the field and Leclerc hot on Verstappen’s tail with five circuits left, a slow burner in the energy-sapping humidity turned into some pyrotechnics towards the finale.
“We were competitive on the hard (tires), and I believed I could catch Max at one point, but they had the speed edge today,” Leclerc said.
Sergio Perez, Verstappen’s Mexican teammate, finished fourth, giving Ferrari a 157-point advantage over Red Bull in the constructors’ standings.
Perez attempted to overtake Sainz on lap 52 after losing speed due to a sensor problem that the team addressed.
Still, he overcooked his move. The Spaniard made his way back in front and remained there despite the Mexican’s fresher tires.
After a short duel, George Russell maintained his record of completing every race in the top five, with Mercedes teammate and seven-time world winner Lewis Hamilton sixth.
Russell overtook Hamilton twice on the track after starting 12th. During the virtual safety car period, he pitted to benefit from fresher tires.
After the initial overtake, he gave up the position because he had gained an advantage by running wide, but he quickly overcame him again.
Alfa Romeo’s Valtteri Bottas finished seventh, with Alpine’s Esteban Ocon eighth in a thrilling comeback after missing Saturday’s qualifying due to a practice collision that required the team to alter his car’s chassis.
Fernando Alonso, a two-time world champion, was relegated to 11th after incurring a five-second penalty for triggering a collision with Gasly.
As a consequence of Alonso’s penalty, Alex Albon moved up to ninth and Aston Martin’s Stroll to tenth.
There was misery for Mick Schumacher, who was enjoying his greatest race to date and seemed to be on his way to earning his first Formula One point until he clashed with Sebastian Vettel of Aston Martin.
After a fuel temperature issue prevented them from heading to the grid, Vettel and teammate Stroll began from the pit lane.
Devika Chowdhury – She is a professional news editor, writer, and blogger for the last 10 years. She is working with NewsGater as an off-beat news editor cum writer.