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Who actually won the Saudi GP? - Saudi Arabian Grand Prix hot takes

Who actually won the Saudi GP? - Saudi Arabian Grand Prix hot takes

Who actually won the Saudi GP? - Saudi Arabian Grand Prix hot takes

Who actually won the Saudi GP? - Saudi Arabian Grand Prix hot takes

Max Verstappen extended his race-winning streak to nine races at the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix on Saturday.

The Dutchman's nearest rival was team-mate Sergio Perez, but the Mexican driver couldn't get within ten seconds of the reigning champion once his time penalty was added - finishing five seconds ahead of Charles Leclerc.

READ MORE: F1 Times Today: Saudi Arabian Grand Prix results - Rookie Bearman stuns as Verstappen wnis

Oscar Piastri and Fernando Alonso rounded out the top five, while teenage sensation Oliver Bearman claimed seventh on his Formula 1 debut, taking home points in his first race with Ferrari.

Here are the GPFans team's takes on the main talking points from the second race of the season at the Jeddah Corniche Circuit.

Max Verstappen claimed victory in Saudi Arabia
Ollie Bearman impressed on his F1 debut

GPFans journalists on the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix

Chris Deeley - US Editor

What did we learn from the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix? Red Bull still have the fastest car. Lance Stroll still belongs in a Formula 1 car about as much as he belongs at your local dive bar. Lewis Hamilton hates his car. Okay.

This is F1 now. As familiar and comfortable as your big winter duvet - and just as likely to send you off for a snooze.

Still, at least Ollie Bearman had a nice weekend. Chapeau, young man.

Dan Ripley - Lead Editor

After the Bahrain bore came the Saudi snooze. If F1 has any wish to draw eyes back onto the main product given the total soap opera behind the scenes then the first two races of the season could not have gone much worse.

Red Bull's domination on track will ironically only keep the talk of their total meltdown off it as the sport's main talking point. Verstappen leads a Red Bull one-two - what's new? Their rivals were once again nowhere to be seen.

In fact Red Bull's biggest rivals are literally themselves right now and that just about sums up the bonkers state of F1.

Back we go again to see if Verstappen wants to stay around for next year or if he really has had enough of Red Bull. Still, if he decides to move on and Red Bull want a fitting replacement, Fernando Alonso looked quite handy still in Jeddah with yet another incredible drive. Get this man a title-winning worthy car for the love of F1!

Will Max Verstappen stay at Red Bull?

Ronan Murphy - Social Media Editor

Who actually won the 2024 Saudi Arabian Grand Prix? Was the answer nobody? Because when the TV cameras switched to the post-race celebrations a new character emerged that had not been seen for two hours.

Max Verstappen stood on the podium to grin along to the F1 national anthem of the Netherlands, having been knitting for the best part of the day. Or perhaps he was doing the Wordle, or maybe even levelling up on Duolingo.

We are told that he was actually driving, winning another race by a country mile, and extending his lead at the top of the championship standings.

He was so far ahead for so long, he was barely shown on screen, a bit like if Sunday night’s Academy Awards gave the Best Actor gong to Gary Oldham for his cameo in Oppenheimer. See? You actually had forgotten he was in the film until I just reminded you.

But there’s no need to remind you who is winning this year’s World Championship. You’ll see him on atop the podium every race for the rest of the season. Just don’t expect to see him during the race.

Stuart Hodge - Chief Editor

All about the Bear-man! The 18-year-old rookie was ice cool in a debut he couldn’t even have dreamed about getting 48 hours ago - beating seven-time world champion Lewis Hamilton in the process. Formula 1 is mad - but this story was just beautiful.

Meanwhile, the Red Bull soap opera seems to be veering towards season finale stage but the racing element of the operation remains as predictable as ever, with Max blasting to another victory at the start of his canter to a fourth world drivers’ championship.

Formula 1 is about the stories right now, more than the racing, and Saudi served up tasty morsels on-track and off-track.

Hopefully we see Ollie again before the end of the season, but of course get well soon Carlos!

READ MORE: Who is Oliver Bearman? The British F1 wonderkid in record-breaking Ferrari debut

Carlos Sainz missed the Saudi Arabian GP

Shay Rogers - Lead Researcher

The only hot thing about this weekend was the location of the race.

It was excellent to see Ollie Bearman make his Formula 1 debut and manage an extremely impressive pace throughout the race, but not even he could do enough to make things exciting on track.

Lance Stroll ticked off a second consecutive weekend with a mistake - how long will he last at Aston Martin?

The on track action leaves much to be desired, but it’s important to remember even through the tough times that Red Bull’s dominance won’t last forever - Logan Sargeant will have them by the end of the season.

Sam Cook - F1 Journalist

What a fantastic drive from Ollie Bearman, finishing his first ever F1 race in seventh, having had to step in at such short notice for the appendicitis-stricken Carlos Sainz.

Unfortunately for F1, the 18-year-old was the only positive story in another chaotic weekend off the track for the Red Bull team.

Another boring race, another Red Bull one-two, if Sergio Perez cannot challenge Max Verstappen then the world championship is as good as done already.

Mercedes look miserably bad, with Lewis Hamilton unfortunately looking off the boil at the start of this season, although a poor strategy choice from his team certainly didn't help his race performance.

Lewis Hamilton has struggled so far in 2024

Tyler Rowlinson - F1 Journalist

Two races in and it’s pointless to even think about any other driver winning a race than Max Verstappen. The man is quite simply on another level and he is showing no signs of slowing down, metaphorically or literally… unfortunately.

While there was the norm at the front as the Dutchman disappeared into the distance by the first sector, the excitement was with Oliver Bearman, who performed terrifically on his debut and will have got the F1 teams keeping tabs on him for sure.

The McLaren duo weren’t wrong about Jeddah being a favourable track for them as they displayed great pace in the corners that Mercedes struggled to cope with.

Pierre Gasly gave us the first retirement of the year as Alpine’s woes show no sign of stopping and Lance Stroll’s crash does him no favours for his critics - he has to be under some pressure from Aston Martin when Fernando Alonso is making him look like an amateur.

While we all hate to see Max take victory so often, you’ll have to get used to it, because he will be winning the other 22 this year. We need a miracle and a half for anyone else to get close to him.

READ MORE: Verstappen admits Horner saga 'damaging' for Red Bull


Red Bull Lewis Hamilton Ferrari Max Verstappen Charles Leclerc Sergio Perez
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