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Live: F1 Brazilian GP commentary and updates – Sprint

Follow minute-by-minute updates for final practice and the sprint race at the Formula 1's Brazilian Grand Prix.

Live: F1 Brazilian GP commentary and updates – Sprint

F1’s sprint race format returns at the penultimate round of the 2022 season, which is set to shake up the Brazilian GP at Interlagos.

Having wrapped up both F1 world titles already this season, Max Verstappen and Red Bull will look to take another clean sweep having won both sprint races earlier this season at Imola and the Red Bull Ring.

But Verstappen will need to beat shock polesitter Kevin Magnussen, who secured top spot in a wet qualifying, after Q3 was halted by a red flag caused by George Russell sliding off, before the weather worsened and denied any chance for improvements.

By: Jake Boxall-Legge, James Newbold, Haydn Cobb

Summary

Summary

  • George Russell wins the sprint race to set up an all-Mercedes front row for Sunday's Brazilian Grand Prix
  • The Briton passes Max Verstappen on lap 15 of 24 for the lead and pulls away to win from Carlos Sainz and Lewis Hamilton
  • Verstappen, alone among the frontrunners in choosing medium tyres, led early after passing polesitter Kevin Magnussen's Haas on lap three
  • But Verstappen picks up front wing damage as Sainz - who will start seventh tomorrow with a five-place grid penalty for an engine change - overtook him, causing him to drop back
  • Alpine drivers Ocon and Alonso clash twice on opening lap, the later suffers front wing damage and has to pit. The pair finish lowly 15th (Alonso) and 18th with Ocon's car on fire in parc ferme
  • Stroll given 10-second time penalty for dangerous move on Aston team-mate Vettel, who recovers to finish ninth
  • Albon retires with mechanical issue in his Williams after sitting out FP2 for Sargeant to gain extra superlicence point

Leaderboard

  1. Russell, Mercedes
  2. Sainz, Ferrari
  3. Hamilton, Mercedes
  4. Verstappen, Red Bull
  5. Perez, Red Bull
  6. Leclerc, Ferrari
  7. Norris, McLaren
  8. Magnussen, Haas
  9. Vettel, Aston Martin
  10. Gasly, AlphaTauri
Status: Stopped
Plenty to recap then after that, as George Russell pounced on Max Verstappen to take victory in the sprint ahead of Carlos Sainz and Lewis Hamilton, while Verstappen brought his car (sans front wing endplate) home fourth. We'll be back tomorrow building up to the Brazilian Grand Prix - after today's antics, we can't wait! In the meantime, keep up with all the latest news from Interlagos on Autosport.com. Until then, see you soon.
We understand it's Ocon's car, which tumbled back from a points-paying position to finish ahead only of Latifi's medium-shod Williams.
Footage on social media appears to show one of the Alpines on fire in parc ferme as well. A bad day for the French team just got a lot worse.
Here's the full report from that madcap sprint race, courtesy of F1 editor Matt Kew: https://www.autosport.com/f1/news/f1-brazilian-gp-russell-overhauls-verstappen-to-win-sprint-race/10398896/
The remainder of the grid is as follows:
9. Vettel
10. Gasly
11. Ricciardo
12. Schumacher
13. Zhou
14. Bottas
15. Alonso
16. Tsunoda
17. Stroll
18. Ocon
19. Latifi
20. Albon
To recap, with Sainz's penalty, the grid for tomorrow will look like this:
1. Russell
2. Hamilton
3. Verstappen
4. Perez
5. Leclerc
6. Norris
7. Sainz
8. Magnussen
Well, we suspect not if you're an Alpine fan.
Was that the best F1 sprint race yet? Let us know your thoughts.
But the biggest cheers are reserved for winner Russell, who is presented with a medal around his neck. Not quite as good as a trophy, but better than a model Pirelli tyre we'll wager.
A makeshift awning is set up in lieu of an official podium on the pitstraight, and Hamilton gets a warm welcome from the packed grandstands opposite after being granted honourary Brazilian citizenship earlier this week.
 
That was a truly breathless sprint race, where differing tyre strategies and the power of DRS down the long pit straight threw up a fascinating bout. Verstappen will perhaps rue choosing the medium tyre, going against the grain with Latifi the only other driver to go for the yellow sidewall rubber.
Well then, that whets the appetite nicely for tomorrow doesn't it?
Russell is mobbed by his mechanics after a sweet success. It won't go down in the books as a grand prix win, but he has every chance of doing just that tomorrow as he starts from pole after a superbly-judged sprint victory.
With Sainz carrying a five-place grid penalty into tomorrow, Mercedes will lock out the front row of the Brazilian Grand Prix. Quite the turnaround for the Silver Arrows after its early season struggles.
After their lap one contretemps, it's a disastrous day for Alpine with Alonso 15th and Ocon tumbling to 18th. Two points for Norris finishing seventh makes the constructors' championship race for fourth that little bit more interesting...
Perez follows his team leader home in fifth, ahead of Leclerc, Norris and poleman Magnussen who picks up the final point for eighth.
It's victory for George Russell in the Interlagos sprint race! He takes the flag first ahead of Sainz and Hamilton, as Verstappen limps home fourth with his damaged front wing.
Last lap for George Russell, who is on course to take the checkered flag for the first time in his F1 career.
Points are awarded down to eighth position in the sprint race. Can Magnussen hold onto P8 as Vettel chases after him?
Hamilton doesn't appear close enough to Sainz to have a pop for second, the leading trio seemingly content to take their starting positions for tomorrow now.
Two laps to go for Russell, who has a 3.7 second lead over Sainz and looks comfortable out in front.
Vettel has now taken Gasly for ninth place. It's been a solid afternoon's work for the Aston Martin driver.
Sainz's right-rear tyre clipped Verstappen as he came through at Turn 1, will the Spaniard get away with that contact without any repercussion? Meanwhile Perez is now closing on Verstappen's fourth place as the Dutchman is now running without his left-front wing endplate.
Norris has had enough of sitting on Magnussen's gearbox and makes his move stick into Turn 4 to claim eighth place from the poleman.
Hamilton now breezes past Verstappen to take third. It's a Mercedes 1-3!
Contact! Sainz is through on Verstappen, who loses part of his front wing endplate against the Ferrari. Can he stay out?
Russell has scampered off into the distance now, and Verstappen will face a fight on his hands over the closing laps to hold Sainz and Hamilton at bay.
Behind Magnussen in seventh, Norris is still eighth ahead of Gasly, Vettel and Ricciardo, while Stroll is busy defending his position on-track at least from Schumacher. Ocon continues to plummet and has slipped back to 16th. Alonso after his stop has passed Latifi and runs 18th.
Stroll has been handed a 10-second time penalty for a dangerous manoeuvre, which we can only assume was his hard defence against Vettel. Expect a tense team debrief at Aston after this.
Meanwhile Leclerc has moved ahead of Magnussen to take sixth, but the poleman is still ahead of Norris as the best of the rest in seventh.
Sainz is having to defend hard now from Hamilton, but he's still closing up on Verstappen - whose gamble on medium tyres appears not to have paid off. Russell is quickly gapping the world champion out in front.
On lap 15 the Mercedes driver gets a great run through the first complex after forcing Verstappen to take a defensive line into Turn 1, and this time is able to get far enough ahead on the run to Turn 4 to pull across in front of the Red Bull.
Russell takes the lead!
Hamilton is right with Sainz now. Could he pounce and take third?
Albon's stranded Williams is cleared, so the leaders are cleared to continue racing. Verstappen reports that he has hit some debris.
Alex Albon has pulled off in the Williams, bringing out the yellow flags.
Russell is right with Verstappen again into Turn 1 starting lap 13, but can't get the move done on the outside. He tries a switchback exiting Turn 5, but has to give best once more on the outside approaching the uphill Turn 6.
And at the front, there's a battle brewing! Russell gets alongside Verstappen into Turn 4, but can't cut ahead as the Red Bull brakes late on the inside.
Amid that excitement, Perez has passed Magnussen for fifth.