Max Verstappen claims record 17th win of season, beats Norris and Alonso in Sao Paulo Grand Prix

Public TV English
Public TV English
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SAO PAULO: Red Bull’s Max Verstappen drove confidently to a commanding victory in the Sao Paulo Grand Prix, giving him a record-breaking 17th victory in 2023.

Even before the race began, there was drama when Charles Leclerc crashed on the formation lap after failing hydraulics, forcing him to retire. Verstappen had a clean start into the lead when the lights went out, but a heavy collision involving Alex Albon and Kevin Magnussen behind resulted in the red flags being waved.

Verstappen made another excellent start at the restart, holding P1 despite a challenge from Lando Norris before going on to win his second race of the weekend after winning the Sprint on Saturday. Norris finished second, while Fernando Alonso completed the podium by holding off Sergio Perez in a thrilling race to the finish line.

Verstappen led from start to finish after a tumultuous start in which Charles Leclerc crashed on the formation lap and the race was red flagged due to a collision between Alex Albon, Nico Hulkenberg, and Kevin Magnussen at the first circuit.

The Dutchman’s 17th win of the 2023 season was also his 52nd in Formula One, moving him above Alain Prost to fourth on the all-time Grand Prix winner’s list, trailing only Sebastian Vettel (53), Michael Schumacher (91) and Lewis Hamilton (103) in that order.
For the first time since the Dutch Grand Prix in August, Alonso returned to the podium and delivered a defensive masterpiece versus Perez in a dramatic duel in the closing 15 laps.

For several laps, Perez was in Alonso’s DRS but couldn’t pass as the Aston Martin driver took alternate lines to stay ahead. Perez eventually passed Alonso on the penultimate lap, but the Spaniard didn’t give up and got back ahead on the final lap coming into Turn Four, holding off Perez by 0.053s in a photo finish.

Lance Stroll finished fifth, Aston Martin’s highest finish since early in the season, with Carlos Sainz sixth and Pierre Gasly seventh.
Mercedes had a disappointing day, with Lewis Hamilton finishing ninth and George Russell retiring from a poor points position. Yuki Tsunoda improved from 16th on the grid to ninth, with Esteban Ocon in 10th.

But it was a masterpiece from Verstappen at the front, with Norris getting alongside the three-time world champion at Turn Four on Lap Eight, but that was the closest he got to the lead. (ANI)

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