Formula 1 Commentary

F1 Emilia Romagna GP Live Commentary and Updates - Race day

Live updates from the 2021 Formula 1 Emilia Romagna GP at Imola

F1 Emilia Romagna GP Live Commentary and Updates - Race day

By: Jake Boxall-Legge, Haydn Cobb, Megan White


  • Max Verstappen wins the F1 Emilia Romagna GP
  • Hamilton came P2 with Norris in third
  • Vettel retires with a gear box issue
  • Tsunoda handed five second penalty for track limits
  • Race restarted from a rolling start after it was red flagged after Bottas and Russell crashed out

1. Verstappen, Red Bull
2. Hamilton, Mercedes
3. Norris, McLaren
4. Leclerc, Ferrari
5. Sainz, Ferrari
6. Ricciardo, McLaren
7. Stroll, Aston Martin
8. Gasly, AlphaTauri
9. Raikkonen, Alfa Romeo
10. Ocon, Alpine

Status: Stopped
Thanks everyone for joining us - and as always, we'll be back for the Portuguese Grand Prix in two weeks' time! Take it easy.
And here's the report from a thrilling Emilia Romagna Grand Prix:
"Ferrari - Official Toast of F1"


Just a little bit dramatic, wasn't it?
Norris: "We opted to go on the softs on the restart, we had good pace for the first 10-15 laps but I knew I was going to struggle."
"I didn't know whether or know I'd be able to overtake, but I had some really fun battles," Hamilton explains, having to make a recovery on the restart.
"It was very hard to stay on track to be honest, it was very slippery!" says Verstappen.
The McLaren personnel are elated with Norris' podium, vindicating the decision to swap him with Ricciardo earlier on.
Leclerc and Sainz collect a nice haul of points for Ferrari - as Ricciardo holds off from Stroll and Gasly! Raikkonen gets ninth, as Ocon gets a point for Alpine in P10.
Hamilton, after his earlier off, recovers second place - as Norris completes the podium with his second McLaren podium!
And Max Verstappen comes around to win the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix at an absolute canter!

Vettel, who started this race from the pitlane, will not see the chequered flag as he is told over team radio to retire on the penultimate lap.

Mazepin, who is two laps down in this race, has had a spin somewhere in the middle sector but has got going again. As you were.

It's the final lap.
Hamilton does a 1m16.702s on that lap to provisionally snatch the fastest lap point away from Verstappen.
"He was too quick for me," Norris reports. Hamilton's 20s behind Verstappen now.
Hamilton, however, finally clears Norris into turn 1, sweeping around the outside of the orange machine.
Norris reports clutch slipping in the middle of the corners. He's told he's knocking a steering wheel paddle, so he's got to keep his hands off.

Gasly takes the bumpy route around Rivazza as he runs wide and bounces over the gravel. That allows Stroll, who he had been catching, to escape up the road in seventh.

Norris' defense on the beginning of lap 58 was impeccable there, parking the car in the middle of the road to give Hamilton nowhere to pass him.
Hamilton had a look at Norris there, but the McLaren driver hangs on to second for the time being. But it seems like a matter of time now...

Tsunoda has tempted fate one too many times and been given a five-second time penalty for exceeding track limits at Turn 9. Probably some naughty words being said over his team radio but he was warned.

Norris vs Hamilton, then, with Hamilton now within DRS reach of the McLaren.
Leclerc doesn't have DRS this time, and Hamilton is able to swoop past the Ferrari to claim third place.

Raikkonen will be investigated after the race for a rolling start procedure infringement. It is going to be a long night for the race stewards.

10 laps remain. Hamilton has another look at Leclerc, but he still can't quite find his way past at Turn 1 as the Ferrari just keeps afloat.

Tsunoda has got ahead of Vettel for P13 but that could be as good as it gets for him as Perez is nine seconds up the road.

Hamilton doesn't quite have enough on Leclerc to pass with DRS that time around, as Norris is keeping the Ferrari fed with its own DRS activation.

Given all the spins, clashes and mechanical issues there have been in this race, it is worth noting there are still 17 runners in this race. Only Bottas, Russell and Latifi have retired and their cars were proper write offs.

Hamilton's just dropped a 1m17.858s to catch up to Leclerc - but it seems just a matter of time before he clears the other Ferrari.
Hamilton now gets past Sainz, charging around the outside of the Ferrari to lift himself up to fourth at the start of Lap 50.

A lap later Perez tries the same move on Vettel and gets it right this time to claim P12. Next up for the Mexican is Alpine duo Ocon and Alonso in 10th and 11th.

Hamilton now has a tilt at Sainz, grabbing DRS to try and round the Ferrari - but Sainz holds the reigning champion off.

Perez, looking to make up for his earlier spin, pulls alongside Vettel at the first corner but can't get his Red Bull stopped and bounces over the kerbs which allows Vettel back ahead into P12.

Every driver has got a story to tell after this race, but Gasly's could be the longest. After fading to the back of the pack on the wet tyres, he's back up to P8 after getting by Raikkonen.

Verstappen's just cracking on with fastest lap after fastest lap. He's now done a 1m18.011s, so he's continuing to break-build.

In fact, Tsunoda has been shown the black and white flag for not respecting track limits at Turn 9. He's got to be careful now or he will face a penalty.

Conditions clearly much better for the final third of this race. Lap times back to where they would be in normal race circumstances and drivers are even being pinged for exceeding track limits rather than staying away from the slippery kerbs.

The AWS graphic says Hamilton will be with Sainz in four laps, but has been rated a maximum difficulty on the overtake-o-meter. Spicy.