Race: Verstappen wins at Imola, disaster for Ferrari

Race: Verstappen wins at Imola, disaster for Ferrari

Such was Max Verstappen’s tempo that he didn’t want Sergio Perez as a rear-gunner on the Emilia Romagna GP however it helped as Pink Bull secured their first 1-2 of the season.

Main from lights to flag, Verstappen not solely confirmed tempo within the drying situations but additionally had a bulletproof RB18 as he raced his method to his second win of this season.

Perez was second forward of Lando Norris, the McLaren driver elevated onto the rostrum after Charles Leclerc pushed too arduous on his new comfortable tyres and hit the wall on the chicane.

He recovered to complete P6 together with his lead within the championship slashed to 27 factors with Verstappen as much as second.

Intermediates had been the tyre of alternative at the beginning of the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix, the moist observe promising early motion. Whereas Max Verstappen stormed off the road, no signal of his dash race points, Sergio Perez was as much as second forward of Lando Norris and Charles Leclerc fell to fourth.

Ferrari’s troubles had been compounded when Daniel Ricciardo tagged Carlos Sainz and put the Spaniard out of the grand prix. “He hit me” was Sainz’s evaluation. Ricciardo dropped to the again of the sphere. George Russell was the massive winner on the opening lap, up from eleventh to sixth, Mick Schumacher the massive loser, down from tenth to seventeenth.

The racing resumed on lap 5 with the Pink Bulls pulling away from Norris who had the bouncing Leclerc throughout his rear wing with Kevin Magnussen operating P5 forward of Russell, Valtteri Bottas and Sebastian Vettel who took P8 off Fernando Alonso on the restart. The Spaniard continued to fall down the order with an in depth up of his Alpine exhibiting a bit lacking out of the fitting sidepod, Alonso retiring on the finish of lap 6.

Two laps later a mad cheer was all of the indication anybody wanted that Leclerc was on the transfer, the championship chief taking third off Norris into the primary a part of the chicane. He was, nonetheless, six seconds down on race chief Verstappen.

Russell was one other driver on the transfer, though it took him a number of laps, the Mercedes driver passing Magnussen for fifth on the Variante Alta with Bottas following him by way of a lap later. Hamilton wasn’t having as a lot luck as his team-mate, the seven-time World Champion struggling to discover a well past the Aston Martin of Stroll.

Ricciardo was the primary to pit for slicks, stopping on lap 16, and by lap 20 all 18 runners had stopped for medium Pirellis with Verstappen main Perez and Leclerc. There was drama within the pits as Bottas had an eight-second cease for a gradual entrance proper, and Hamilton and Ocon made contact down the pit lane with the Alpine launched into the Mercedes’ path, Ocon popping out forward however with a five-second penalty.

Halfway by way of the grand prix it had grow to be a procession because the Race Director was not in a position discover the ‘allow DRS’ button with Verstappen 10 seconds up the highway from Perez and Leclerc whereas Norris, Russell, Bottas and Vettel all ran lonely races forward of Yuki Tsunoda, Magnussen and Lance Stroll.

Lap 34, DRS enabled! However by then solely Alex Albon, Pierre Gasly and Lewis Hamilton had been operating inside a second of one another. Though even then such are Mercedes issues that DRS couldn’t assist Hamilton enhance on his P14.

Leclerc pitted on lap 50 for recent comfortable tyres to strive for the quickest lap level, with Pink Bull then pitting Perez and Verstappen as effectively for good measure. They got here out P1 to P3 once more, the Dutchman nonetheless comfortably forward however Leclerc having closed the hole on Perez by way of his one-lap undercut.

Chasing the Pink Bull, Leclerc put it into the barrier on the Variante Alta, the motive force again into the pits for a brand new entrance wing. He rejoined the race in ninth place however reported that his automotive “doesn’t really feel nice”, Ferrari telling him that the information says every little thing is ok. He quickly overtook Magnussen after which Vettel.

Verstappen romped to a straightforward and unchallenged win forward of Perez for his second P1 of the season and Pink Bull’s first 1-2, taking the chequered flag 16 seconds forward of his team-mate, whereas Norris recorded his and McLaren’s first podium together with his P3.

Russell held off a charging Bottas to complete fourth with Leclerc recovering to sixth place after passing Tsunoda on the ultimate lap. Vettel, Magnussen and Stroll accomplished the factors with Hamilton down in P14.

 

Consequence

1 Max Verstappen Pink Bull
2 Sergio Perez Pink Bull 16.527s
3 Lando Norris McLaren 34.834s
4 George Russell Mercedes 42.506s
5 Valtteri Bottas Alfa Romeo Racing 43.181s
6 Charles Leclerc Ferrari 56.072s
7 Yuki Tsunoda AlphaTauri 61.110s
8 Sebastian Vettel Aston Martin 70.710s
9 Kevin Magnussen Haas 75.026s
10 Lance Stroll Aston Martin 1 LAP
11 Esteban Ocon Alpine 1 LAP
12 Alex Albon Williams 1 LAP
13 Pierre Gasly AlphaTauri 1 LAP
14 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1 LAP
15 Guanyu Zhou Alfa Romeo Racing 1 LAP
16 Nicholas Latifi Williams 1 LAP
17 Mick Schumacher Haas 1 LAP
18 Daniel Ricciardo McLaren 1 LAP

Didn’t end

Fernando Alonso Alpine bodywork injury
Carlos Sainz Ferrari crash

 

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