The Belgian-Dutch star was welcomed by the Zandvoort crowd of 70,000 in the Netherlands. Lewis Hamilton came in second
Max Verstappen won the Dutch Grand Prix with a spectacular victory to knock Lewis Hamilton from the top of the championship standings.
Verstappen’s 17th career triumph was celebrated by the Zandvoort crowd of 70,000.
Hamilton came in second place, while Valtteri Bottas finished third in the other Mercedes.
Hamilton, the seven-time world champion, spent Sunday’s final third complaining about his team’s strategies. Verstappen now trails Hamilton by three points.
After Bottas’s attempt to beat Hamilton’s previous record time, Bottas was forced to chase Hamilton’s fastest lap.
Verstappen’s Orange Army created one of Formula One’s most memorable atmospheres since its return to Holland in 1979 after 36 years. With a dominant win from pole, Verstappen was their star man.
Hamilton was not far behind the Dutchman as he charged to the Tarzanbocht opening Tarzanbocht, covering 262 meters. Hamilton was only 1.7 seconds behind the Dutchman at the end of the first lap.
Hamilton was the first to blink, and he stopped for a new rubber lap 20. However, his Mercedes crew was slow in changing the Briton’s front right tire, which cost him a second.
Verstappen went to the pits and won the race ahead of Hamilton. The gap was reduced from three seconds up to 1.5.
Mercedes decided to play the strategy game and put Bottas on a one-stopper. Bottas was to slow Verstappen and give Hamilton the opportunity to do the undercut at his next change.
Bottas’ 10-second lead was wiped out by Verstappen in seven laps.
“It is going to be absolutely critical to catch and pass if we can,” Gianpiero Lambiase, Verstappen’s race engineer, gave the following to Verstappen
Turn 30: Verstappen completed his pass at the corner’s exit.
Hamilton followed Verstappen around and was within seven-tenths to see Red Bull’s rival extend his lead at lap 39. Hamilton was three seconds ahead of Mercedes when the Briton pulled in for a second stop.
Hamilton won comfortably after Verstappen pulled out of the race the next round.
“We called our bluff too soon, “The Mercedes driver complained. Moments later, he was back on the radio. “I had so much life left in that tire,” Hamilton said.
“I don’t know why we rushed it.”
Hamilton began to draw Verstappen again, but Peter Bonnington, a race engineer, warned Hamilton not to do so.
“I am pushing to close this gap, man,” Hamilton was unable to impress Verstappen.”Come on.”
Pierre Gasly was fourth with Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc (fifth) and Carlos Sainz (6th).
Lando Norris and Sergio Perez fought for ninth place in a race with few incidents. Perez was 10th for McLaren, while Norris was 10th.
Verstappen declared after the race,
It’s a great day. Mercedes made it difficult for us.”The expectations were high coming into the weekend and it is not easy to fulfill that so I am so happy to win here and to take the lead in the championship.
“I was exhausted, and I tried my best to push them as hard as possible, but they were just too fast for me.”
Hamilton added: ”