Formula 1: Max Verstappen beats Lando Norris for third Spanish win in a row

Max Verstappen’s reign over Formula One shows no signs of waning. The Red Bull driver delivered a masterful performance at the Spanish Grand Prix, securing his seventh victory in ten races this season and extending his lead in the driver’s championship standings.

Starting from the front row alongside pole-sitter Lando Norris, Verstappen capitalized on the McLaren driver’s sluggish start, skillfully navigating a chaotic first corner that saw Norris drop to third after a daring manoeuvre onto the grass. George Russell, starting from third, seized the opportunity, launching his Mercedes past both Norris and Verstappen to take an early lead.

“I did a bit of rallying,” Verstappen quipped after the race, referring to the off-track excursion forced upon him by Norris’ aggressive start. “I think we slowed each other down.”

By lap three, however, Verstappen had reclaimed his rightful place at the front of the pack. “I think what made the race was the beginning,” he reflected. “I took the lead … and made that first stint where I could eke out a gap a little bit.”

From that point onward, Verstappen was in a league of his own. While Norris and McLaren displayed impressive pace, Verstappen, relying on a well-executed strategy and his team’s superior car, remained firmly in control. “After that we had to drive kind of a defensive race,” he admitted. “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.”

Behind the dominant Verstappen, the battle for the remaining podium spots was fierce. Lewis Hamilton, the seven-time world champion, finally achieved his first podium finish of the season, taking third place in his Mercedes, followed closely by his teammate George Russell in fourth.

Charles Leclerc finished a strong fifth for Ferrari, just behind Russell, with his teammate Carlos Sainz, cheered on by his home crowd, claiming sixth.

The remaining points-paying positions went to Oscar Piastri in seventh (McLaren), Sergio Perez in eighth (Red Bull), and the Alpine duo of Pierre Gasly and Esteban Ocon rounding out the top ten.

With this latest triumph, Verstappen’s 61st career win, the Dutchman further solidified his grip on the driver’s championship. He now holds a commanding 69-point lead over Lando Norris, who has moved into second place in the standings, followed by Charles Leclerc in third.

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