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Max Verstappen triumphed at the Spanish Grand Prix after major drama that saw Formula 1 title rival Charles Leclerc retire to Barcelona. There was controversy when Red Bull issued team orders to push the world champion over Sergio Perez to boost the drivers’ championship hopes, which seemed to annoy the Mexican driver. Elsewhere, Mercedes have picked up some form as they look to come back strong this summer after a troubling start to the F1 season and the W13 car.
Russell took third to clinch a podium spot, despite a late scare with the Silver Arrows warning he was a DNF contender with the power unit down. Lewis Hamilton finished fifth, with local favorite Carlos Sainz reclaiming some pride for the fans with a fourth-place finish to limit the damage in the constructors’ title race.
Reacting to his heartache, Leclerc said: “I lost power and had to stop because there was a problem. I don’t know yet what the reason is. It hurts. But there are positives, we showed that we were fast.
While Hamilton added that fifth place felt like a win: “I thought it was impossible to get back into the points, but the team said no, you’re for eighth place,” Hamilton said. “I thought they were super optimistic. I’m glad we didn’t [retire] and it just shows that you never stop and you never give up and that’s what I did. A race like that is like a win, and it’s actually better than a win more often than not when you’ve come this far.” Follow live reactions, news and updates from the Spanish Grand Prix below:
‘We have taken another step’: Toto Wolff excited about Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes prospects
Hamilton delivered his best performance of the season at the Spanish Grand Prix on Sunday after fighting back from a first-lap collision with Kevin Magnussen to finish fifth.
Hamilton could be 64 points behind new championship leader Max Verstappen after the Dutchman’s third triumph in as many rounds at Barcelona’s Circuit de Catalunya.
Michael JonesMay 23, 2022 6:15 p.m.
Mercedes tease F1 upgrades for Monaco Grand Prix after Barcelona improvement
Mercedes ground engineering director Andrew Shovlin said there were “new parts in the pipeline” after an impressive performance at the Spanish Grand Prix.
Mercedes entered the new F1 season after a slow start, and although they remained behind Ferrari and Red Bull, there were signs in Barcelona that George Russell and Lewis Hamilton could get back into contention.
Russell battled for a third place while Hamilton battled from the back of the field after a disastrous start to finish fifth, and Mercedes now plan to further improve the car ahead of the next race in Monaco.
Michael JonesMay 23, 2022 6:00 p.m.
Drake loses £185,000 bet on Charles Leclerc at Spanish Grand Prix
Canadian rapper Drake has been particularly disappointed by Charles Leclerc’s retirement from the Spanish Grand Prix, revealing he bet £185,000 on the Ferrari driver to win the race in Barcelona.
This allowed Max Verstappen to take the lead in the Drivers’ Championship standings with a third consecutive race win.
Michael JonesMay 23, 2022 5:45 p.m.
Charles Leclerc highlights ‘many positive signs’ despite Ferrari withdrawal
Charles Leclerc insists there were still plenty of positives to take from the Spanish Grand Prix despite the Ferrari driver recording his first DNF of the 2022 season.
Leclerc had dominated practice, taken pole in Barcelona and appeared to be on course for victory in Sunday’s race until engine failure forced him to retire.
Max Verstappen took full advantage and a third straight win for the reigning world champion saw him take a six-point lead at the top of the drivers’ standings.
Michael JonesMay 23, 2022 5:30 p.m.
Red Bull relaxed about Max Verstappen’s ‘road rage’ at Spanish Grand Prix
Christian Horner has said Max Verstappen’s “road rage” at the Spanish Grand Prix was “understandable” after the Dutchman expressed his frustration on the radio in Barcelona.
Verstappen eventually claimed his third successive victory in Spain, capitalizing on Charles Leclerc’s retirement after an engine problem to lead home a Red Bull double.
The 24-year-old was, however, unhappy with a faulty DRS which only worked intermittently during the race, having also lost a chance for pole in qualifying due to a loss of power in his last round.
“We can’t even get the f****** DRS to work, amazing!” Verstappen fumed over the team radio after a moment of DRS disruption.
Michael JonesMay 23, 2022 5:15 p.m.
Verstappen solves DRS problems
A problem with his DRS system was a worrying thought for Max Verstappen who says it was not easy to drive and diagnose the malfunction while coming back up the field to fight for the top spot.
“I mean, I could have screamed [something] back to the radio, but you can’t do anything. he said, “I’m not stupid; once you get the activation light and beep, you press the…paddle and if it doesn’t open, there’s clearly a problem.
“I spammed it about 50 times at one point on the straight and it just doesn’t open up, so there was clearly a problem. I tried all sorts of things: staying off the curb, on the pavement, open it a little bit later. It was just broken or malfunctioning, so yes, we clearly have a problem there on that wing.
Michael JonesMay 23, 2022 5:05 p.m.
Verstappen had a ‘tough battle’ with Russell
Max Verstappen took his third win of the season as part of a one-two finish for Red Bull at the Spanish Grand Prix and halted his race after the checkered flag hit his DRS issues and how frustrated he was with trying to overtake Mercedes. ‘George Russel.
“A bit of a two-half race,” Verstappen said, “because the first 30 laps were very frustrating for me after I crashed into Turn 4, first of all, which really surprised me because I didn’t feel like I was actually braking later or throwing more speed into the corner But there were a lot of gusts today… it took me by surprise, it wasn’t ideal sure.
“Of course I was a bit frustrated at the time because I couldn’t [Russell] because of DRS issues, but the fight itself was really cool too. I think that lap where I went down on the outside and George went around the outside and I was on the outside of Turn 3 again, I think that was a really cool fight.
“I look back and smile now; at the time of course I was a bit frustrated. But it was a very good and tough battle, I think.
Michael JonesMay 23, 2022 4:57 p.m.
Max Verstappen wins the Spanish Grand Prix and takes the lead after the retirement of Charles Leclerc
The Red Bull driver took advantage of Charles Leclerc’s mechanical failure on lap 27 of 66 before going wild to claim his third victory in as many races.
Sergio Perez completed a brace for Red Bull, as George Russell secured third place, following another fine performance from the young Briton, with Carlos Sainz fourth.
Michael JonesMay 23, 2022 4:43 p.m.
More from Hamilton
Lewis Hamilton says he was disgusted to lose a fourth place finish to Ferrari’s Carlos Sainz, especially after battling from the back of the field, but he’s happy with his performance nonetheless.
“It was a lot warmer than expected today, so for everyone it was quite difficult with these cars,” Hamilton said. “I don’t know exactly what happened with the car, I haven’t spoken with the team… but I just had to drive it at half throttle and try to cool the car down, lots and lots of lifting in the main straight to try and get some cool air into the engine just to try and cool it down.
“I was so disgusted to lose the spot to Sainz, especially after coming from where I come from, you know. I mean, I was over 30 seconds late [the pack]. It’s like no man’s land, and I’m telling you, it’s a horrible feeling to be so far behind. But you just have to keep your head up, keep pushing, keep going and hope for the best.
“They said maybe I could finish eighth, and eighth doesn’t seem like a particularly impressive result! But I was like, at least I’ll get into the points. So fighting for fourth, I was so happy with that.
“I hope it will continue in these next races, we will see.”
Michael JonesMay 23, 2022 4:30 p.m.
Hamilton ‘ruins’ collision with Magnussen
Lewis Hamilton’s winning streak at the Spanish Grand Prix came to an end on Sunday, but the seven-time champion was delighted with his performance at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya after recovering to P5, having finished 19th at the end of the first lap after a collision with Kevin Magnussen.
Magnussen challenged Hamilton on the outside of Turn 4 when the pair touched, with the Haas jumping on the gravel and Hamilton suffering a puncture. After returning to the pits, Hamilton then looked set for a long afternoon and at one point pleaded with his Mercedes team to pull him out and save his engine.
But, he fought back brilliantly and flew through the pack to claim a P5 finish.
“The car felt good in the race,” Hamilton said afterwards, “Our pace was closer to the others, the top guys in the race, which was amazing,
“Just really unhappy at first to have had the puncture that we had [in the Magnussen contact]. But I didn’t give up, because that’s what we do.
“But damn it, if I hadn’t had that problem at the start, who knows where we would have ended up. But it’s great to know that we had a similar pace to some of the leaders.
Michael JonesMay 23, 2022 4:17 p.m.