Max Verstappen won the Formula 1 Miami Grand Prix yesterday (8) and reduced Charles Leclerc’s lead in the drivers’ standings from 27 to 19 points. The Red Bull Dutchman led the race from the ninth lap of a total of 57, but anyone who thinks it was easy to secure his third victory in the five races of the season is wrong.
In fact, the whole weekend was tense for Verstappen. He didn’t have the performance of someone who is fighting for the world title in any of the three free practices – in one of them, his car even released smoke and fire from the rear and didn’t allow the time to be set. Still, the Red Bull driver started in third to take the win. The first sentence after the race showed what he was feeling.
I need a drink. and I think you [equipe] too (laughs).”
Already in the official post-race interview, Max Verstappen explained better the meaning of his request for a drink to celebrate his victory in the complicated – to say the Minimum- street circuit set up in Miami.
It was a really cool race, physically tough, but I’m incredibly happy to make it to the end and win here in Miami. I’m fine, a little tired, but soon I’ll be fine and I’m sure very happy. It was an amazing Sunday for us.”
The seven-time world champion Lewis Hamilton started in sixth position, was fifth and even eighth during the race and finished exactly in his starting place. Passed by Mercedes teammate George Russell, Hamilton made an outburst via radio with engineer Peter Bonnington, better known as Bono.
Strategies haven’t been very good for me, man.”
Hamilton’s main criticism is the fact that Mercedes did not call him to the pits during the safety car, contrary to what happened with George Russell. In the end, Russell had more power in the final ten laps to finish in fifth place. Hamilton protested:
We are waiting for luck. When you’re out there, you don’t have all the information. You don’t know where everyone is and you don’t have the image they have on the screen. So when you have the responsibility to make a decision, you can’t gamble. I do not like this. But anyway, [os membros de sua equipe] were just unfortunate in the decision.”
And the lament in the Ferrari
Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz, who finished the Miami GP in second and third places, regretted the result. Leclerc, by the way, who is the leader of the season, said that he thought it was possible to pass Verstappen in the final stretch of the race.
Verstappen overtook me [na nona volta] and it got a lot more difficult. In the end I thought I could catch him at one point, I got close to him, but today they had the advantage in terms of pace and were stronger.”
Leclerc went on to say:
It was a very difficult race physically speaking, we suffered a bit. But in the end, it was fun. It was nice to see so many people here this weekend, so many Ferrari fans. Thank you very much. We now need to keep working, because the next races will be important and we can evolve. It’s been too tight [a disputa com Verstappen] and that’s what the public wants to see.”
Sainz, who won a frantic dispute for third place with Sergio Perez, from Red Bull, revealed that he competed in pain. The Spaniard considered his result in Miami as “decent”.
I have been better. After the Friday crash I had a little pain in my neck, but I did the race. Keeping Perez at the end was very difficult, but it was good to stay in third, a good result. It wasn’t easy because of the heat, the car was skidding a lot, but in the end I got in the position I deserved, a very decent result. Now it’s time to improve. I’d like more than that, but it’s not bad.