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Verstappen dominates regardless of grid drop to steer Purple Bull 1-2

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The reigning world champion launched from sixth as a consequence of a gearbox penalty, however surged into the lead on lap 15 and ran unchallenged to the chequered flag to attain Purple Bull’s Twelfth-consecutive win of the season.

When the lights went out, polesitter Leclerc swung throughout Perez’s bows to keep up the lead at La Supply, the place Carlos Sainz, beginning fourth, locked up after which collided with Oscar Piastri working simply behind from fifth on the grid on the within.

The McLaren was pinched in opposition to the within wall, damaging its suspension and ripping the facet of the Ferrari’s right-side sidepod, with Piastri slowing on the run downhill to Eau Rouge and later stopping on the primary lap of 44.

Up forward, Perez used his RB19’s straightline velocity to blast by Leclerc into the lead the primary time they ran up the Kemmel straight and he shortly constructed a DRS-breaking lead.

Verstappen was fourth by the top of lap one, the place he remained behind MercedesLewis Hamilton, who had began third, and Leclerc over the primary section of the race as Perez continued to drag clear forward.

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However when Hamilton misplaced DRS to Leclerc on lap six, Verstappen pounced going up the Kemmel straight and, with DRS himself, had sufficient to make a transfer to the within and seal third place.

He then pursued Leclerc, who’s hole to the lead had stabilised considerably at simply over two seconds, however as the top of the opening 10 laps approached it had eked out once more to a few seconds.

Max Verstappen, Purple Bull Racing RB19

Picture by: Andy Hone / Motorsport Images

On lap 9, Verstappen shot to Leclerc’s exterior because the pair traversed the Kemmel straight, with the Ferrari defending the within, but it surely was an unsuccessful defence as Verstappen braked later and swept forward on the first a part of Les Combes.

Perez’s hole to his team-mate was nonetheless the identical margin he had over Leclerc initially of lap 10, however over the subsequent stage of the race Verstappen step by step ate into that benefit.

On lap 13, with Perez’s lead all the way down to 2.4s, he got here into the pits – simply after Verstappen and his engineer Gianpiero Lambiase had one other staff radio spat, this time apparently in regards to the instances the Purple Bull drivers have been being requested to do, with the Dutchman involved each automobiles would do the identical.

When Perez pitted, his cease practically a second longer with plenty of sparks coming off his left-rear wheel and with Leclerc coming by as he pitted from third on the identical time, as they switched to mediums from softs.

Verstappen was introduced in on the finish of the next tour having been requested if he may make it staying out on his softs till predicted rain arrived round half-distance, which he dismissed.

The second Purple Bull cease was a second faster than the primary and that every one added as much as Perez’s lead being all the way down to 1.5s on Verstappen’s outlap and that was all the way down to 1.1s on lap later, with the chaser quickly getting DRS on the Kemmel straight for the primary time.

Inevitably, the subsequent time by on the identical spot, Verstappen powered into the lead with an outdoor line DRS-run heading on the straight – simply surging forward of Perez, who tucked in behind his team-mate.

Verstappen stayed on it to snap Perez’s DRS menace on the identical lap, then shot to a close to four-second lead by the point the rain arrived on the twentieth tour.

It stayed mild initially, however instances went up by practically three seconds for the leaders and Verstappen virtually dropped his automotive working via Eau Rouge one lap later.

Sergio Perez, Red Bull Racing RB19, Charles Leclerc, Ferrari SF-23, Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes F1 W14

Sergio Perez, Purple Bull Racing RB19, Charles Leclerc, Ferrari SF-23, Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes F1 W14

Picture by: Sam Bloxham / Motorsport Images

That didn’t dim his momentum, nonetheless, as he was quickly over five-seconds away from Perez, because the rain remained mild in comparison with the deluges that delayed Saturday’s classes.

It eased off utterly round half-distance, with Verstappen then ploughing on to increase his result in close to 10s by the point the leaders ready for a second spherical of stops.

Because the leaders had made an extended stint on the softs work higher than many within the pack behind on full tanks, the red-walled rubber was the compound of alternative for the ultimate run to the flag.

Hamilton, who began to shut in on Leclerc in fourth throughout their stint on the mediums earlier than dropping again once more because it wore on, was the primary to return in on lap 27.

Leclerc was introduced within the subsequent time by to cowl the Mercedes, which needed to struggle by Fernando Alonso’s Aston Martin because the Ferrari rejoined.

This section lower Leclerc’s benefit, such because the undercut’s energy, that Hamilton was the closest he had been to the Monegasque driver since Verstappen got here by within the early laps, however once more the Ferrari was capable of draw back.

Purple Bull made the identical technique name with Perez coming in on lap 29 and Verstappen on lap 30, after which the chief set a quickest lap practically two-second’s faster than the private greatest Perez had simply pumped in.

This earned a rebuke from Lambiase, who requested Verstappen to “use your head a bit extra” as his tempo instantly on his outlap after which on the flier being deemed “not very smart” with the gentle nonetheless exhibiting “cheap deg”.

Carlos Sainz, Ferrari SF-23, Oscar Piastri, McLaren MCL60, collide at the start

Carlos Sainz, Ferrari SF-23, Oscar Piastri, McLaren MCL60, collide initially

Picture by: Steven Tee / Motorsport Images

Verstappen prompt pushing on and stopping once more a la Austria, however this was given brief shrift because the lead rose to 12.4s by lap 34.

From there, Verstappen continued pulling away and finally gained with a crushing victory of twenty-two.3s over Perez, who was 9.9s forward of Leclerc.

Hamilton had been working a number of seconds adrift of the ultimate podium spot when he was pitted with two laps to go to modify again to the mediums for a closing stint, which he used to deprive Verstappen of the quickest lap because the Briton set that on the ultimate tour, with a 1m47.305s in opposition to the Purple Bull driver’s 1m48.922s set throughout that preliminary interval after his second cease.

Hamilton was capable of cease for a 3rd time as a result of Alonso was greater than a pitstop adrift in fifth, having edged clear of varied pack battles through the two pitstop phases.

George Russell took sixth having began on the contra-strategy with mediums for the opening stint, which meant he ran lengthy and likewise needed to put in a number of passes to rise from his eighth place beginning spot.

That included a late cross on Lando Norris, who was one of many first to cease as McLaren struggled for tempo early-on – his machine’s added downforce from its massive rear wing being a boon through the transient rain bathe and a hinderance when defending in opposition to rivals.

Norris finally completed seventh, whereas behind Esteban Ocon put in a collection of daring late passes to maneuver as much as eighth – together with a forceful transfer via the primary a part of the Les Combes chicane on AlphTauri’s Yuki Tsunoda, who finally got here house behind Lance Stroll in tenth.

Sainz was the race’s different retirement – the Spaniard stopped within the Ferrari storage simply earlier than half-distance as he ran on the rear of the pack exhibiting little tempo in his broken automotive.

F1 Belgian GP – race outcomes

 



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