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British Grand Prix: Verstappen makes history by claiming first F1 sprint win

British Grand Prix: Verstappen makes history by claiming first F1 sprint win

F1 News

British Grand Prix: Verstappen makes history by claiming first F1 sprint win

British Grand Prix: Verstappen makes history by claiming first F1 sprint win

Max Verstappen made F1 history by claiming victory in the first sprint race and in the process captured pole position for Sunday's British Grand Prix.

The pole represents the eighth of Red Bull driver Verstappen's F1 career, and his fourth in a row after a clean sweep of the recent triple-header in the French, Styrian and Austrian Grands Prix.

Even though the 'race' lasted just 17 laps and 30 minutes, it still provided excitement for a crowd of over 100,000 at Silverstone, with Verstappen striking another blow against seven-time champion Lewis Hamilton.

Verstappen's win was sealed off the line because despite his left-front brake catching fire as the cars waited to pull away the Dutch driver made a cleaner start compared to Mercedes' Hamilton who had set the fastest time in qualifying on Friday evening.

Under the new rules, Verstappen claimed three points to Hamilton's two for finishing runner-up, and has now opened up a 33-point cushion over the seven-time champion going into the main race.

Hamilton at least twice attempted to reclaim the lead from Verstappen on the opening lap, in particular, around the outside of Copse but it was to no avail.

Instead, Hamilton was forced to yield and had to settle for second, and so will start on the front row alongside polesitter Verstappen for the 51-lap main event.

Prior to the start, Mercedes took a major gamble by placing Valtteri Bottas on the soft tyres, while everyone else around him in the top 10 were on the medium compound.

That was in a bid to try and catch Verstappen cold at the start but it was a move that ultimately failed to pay dividends.

Bottas will start the grand prix from the position in which he began the sprint of third, similarly with Ferrari's Charles Leclerc who started and finished fourth.

The big loser from the event was Sergio Perez, who had started fifth in his Red Bull, only for a spin on lap four to send the Mexican hurtling towards the back of the field.

The team retired Perez's car with a lap remaining, and he will start from last on the grid.

Alongside Bottas, the only other drivers who started on the soft tyres were Alpine duo Fernando Alonso and Esteban Ocon, who began 11th and 13th respectively, as well as Kimi Raikkonen in the Alfa Romeo, who was down in 17th.

Alonso made a blistering start, with his extra grip allowing him to make up six places through the first few corners, but as expected the nature of his rubber soon gave way.

The two-time champion was passed by Lando Norris and Daniel Ricciardo, with the McLaren duo to start fifth and sixth, with Alonso seventh, so at least a gain of four places.

Aston Martin's Sebastian Vettel was also a winner as he started the race 10th and will now line up eighth for the grand prix, while Williams' George Russell also moves up a place from 10th to ninth, thanks to Perez.

Russell, however, is under investigation for a lap-one collision with Ferrari's Carlos Sainz, who drops two places from ninth to 11th, with Ocon starting 10th.

Further down the grid, AlphaTauri's Pierre Gasly starts 12th ahead of Raikkonen who, like Alonso, also made up four places.

Aston Martin's Lance Stroll starts 14th ahead of Alfa Romeo's Antonio Giovinazzi, Yuki Tsunoda in his AlphaTauri, Williams' Nicholas Latifi, with Haas duo Mick Schumacher and Nikita Mazepin 18th and 19th.

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