Home Sport Third win for Verstappen in Spain after beating Norris to chequered flag

Third win for Verstappen in Spain after beating Norris to chequered flag

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The Dutch driver extended his championship lead to a hefty 69 points, with Lando Norris moving up to become the triple world champion’s closest rival and also taking a bonus point for fastest lap.

Red Bull’s Max Verstappen celebrates winning the Spanish Formula One Grand Prix at the Circuit de Catalunya on June 23, 2024 in Montmelo, on the outskirts of Barcelona. Picture: Thomas COEX, AFP

Alan Baldwin, in Barcelona – Red Bull’s Max Verstappen won the Spanish Formula One Grand Prix for the third year in a row on Sunday after McLaren’s pole-sitter Lando Norris lost out at the start and finished 2.2 seconds behind.

Seven times world champion Lewis Hamilton was third for his first podium appearance of the season with Mercedes team mate George Russell fourth on a sunny afternoon at Barcelona’s Circuit de Catalunya.

The Dutch driver extended his championship lead to a hefty 69 points, with Norris moving up to become the triple world champion’s closest rival and also taking a bonus point for fastest lap.

Norris paid the price for a slow start, dropping to third into the first corner after squeezing Verstappen onto the grass while Russell rocketed past from the second row to take them both and lead the field.

“I did a bit of rallying. I think we slowed each other down,” commented Verstappen afterwards.

Verstappen, who had started alongside Norris on the front row, was leading by lap three and could then build a buffer and take control.

“I think what made the race was the beginning,” he said. “I took the lead … and made that first stint where I could eke out a gap a little bit.

“After that we had to drive kind of a defensive race. Lando and McLaren were very quick today … I think we did everything well, we drove quite an aggressive strategy but luckily it played out to the end.”

Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc was fifth, after taking the chequered flag just 0.3 behind Russell, and team mate Carlos Sainz sixth in front of his home crowd.

McLaren’s Oscar Piastri was seventh, Red Bull’s Sergio Perez eighth, with Alpine duo Pierre Gasly and Esteban Ocon taking the final points.

The win was Verstappen’s seventh in 10 races so far this season, and 61st of his career.

He now has 219 points to Norris’s 150 and Leclerc’s 148.

Reuters

Reporting by Alan Baldwin, Editing by Louise Heavens

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