Verstappen Wins Dutch GP & Re-Claims F1 Lead
Red Bull driver Max Verstappen, center, of the Netherlands celebrates on the podium next to Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton, left, of Britain, second position, and Mercedes driver Valtteri Bottas, of Finland, third position

Max Verstappen moved into top spot in the Formula 1 World Drivers’ Championship standings as he became the first Dutchman to win the Dutch Grand Prix on Sunday.

The Red Bull driver started on pole position and withstood challenges from Mercedes pair Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas to claim the chequered flag.

Hamilton minimized the damage of being runner-up by claiming an extra point for fastest lap as he finished on the podium along with Bottas.

Verstappen moves up to 224.5 points ahead of Hamilton on 221.5, with Bottas third on 123 ahead of Lando Norris on 114 with Red Bull’s Sergio Perez fifth on 108.

“You’ve seen this whole year already, Mercedes and us, we’ve been really close to each other,” an emotional Verstappen said after re-claiming the lead.

“To deliver at the end of the day, I’m very satisfied, yesterday already with pole but then also to win the race. What was crucial today was first of all the start.

“Then throughout the race, I was just managing that gap (so they) couldn’t undercut us.”

Hamilton was disappointed by his team’s strategy through the race but conceded Red Bull simply had more speed.

“I definitely think that wasn’t our best strategy but it was really hard out there. At the end of the day they were just too quick,” he said.

“We’ll take it offline and try and figure out how we can improve it, but I think we stopped too early in that second part and it had just been a point where we got through traffic, I’d lost a good second to him and I needed time to close that gap up before we did a stop.

“Then I came out behind traffic so couldn’t actually implement (the plan) and I don’t know how they didn’t see that.”

The F1 season moves to Monza for the Italian Grand Prix next week, with still nine scheduled races to come.

Ben somerford
Sports Pundit staff writer @bensomerford
Australian journalist who specialises on all sports, focusing on football, tennis, basketball and racing, having written for global publications including FourFourTwo, AAP, Inside Futbol and many more....

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