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Austria

Verstappen Wins Active Austrian Thriller

 

Max Verstappen took a maiden home win for both he and his Red Bull team in an action packed Austrian Grand Prix.

Poleman Valtteri Bottas got a bad start, meaning his position was immediately under attack from teammate Lewis Hamilton and Ferrari's Kimi Raikkonen. Verstappen also fought his way through to second but a mistake allowed Bottas back through. The addition of DRS made the action even more thrilling and assisted the drivers in closing gaps and completing overtakes.

As things started to calm down, Race Director Charlie Whiting had an opportunity to complete a few investigations on some of the lap 1 incidents. All were eventually declared racing incidents.

The activity at Renault was frantic on lap 12, when Nico Hulkenberg stopped on track due to a hydraulic issue. Two laps later, Mercedes were rushed off their feet as Bottas pulled up because of an engine failure. The Virtual Safety Car was deployed while the stricken Silver Arrow was removed. Ferrari and red Bull pulled both of their drivers in for a pit stop and Hamilton retained the lead.

Hamilton and his team had a disagreement over the race strategy that they were going to use. Consequently, when he stopped on lap 26, they handed local hero Verstappen the lead. The Dutch orange army were elated.

The final section of the race saw Verstappen pull away from his competitors, who dropped like flies. First went Daniel Ricciardo. next went Lewis Hamilton, leaving just the Ferrari's to challenge Verstappen for the win. Unfortunately, their tyres had grained too much, meaning they were struggling for grip and unable to close the gaps.

Max Verstappen crossed the line to win he and his team's home race for the first time. After parking his car, Max crowdsurfed his way across the pit lane and heads of his crew. Both he and Father Jos (who used to race in F1) finished the celebrations with a victory hug.

 

Driver of the Day: Max Verstappen

Result:

1 Max Verstappen - 1:21:56

2 Kimi Raikkonen

3 Sebastian Vettel

4 Romain Grosjean

5 Kevin Magnussen

6 Sergio Perez

7 Esteban Ocon

8 Fernando Alonso

9 Charles Leclerc

10 Marcus Ericsson

11 Pierre Gasly

12 Carlos Sainz

13 Lance Stroll

14 Sergey Sirotkin

15 Stoffel Vandoorne

16 Lewis Hamilton    DNF

17 Brendon Hartley   DNF

18 Daniel Ricciardo   DNF

19 Valtteri Bottas       DNF

20 Nico Hulkenberg   DNF