F1 Hungarian GP: Verstappen streaks to victory, Red Bull claims 12th successive win
Max Verstappen captured Red Bull's 12th successive Formula 1 victory at the Hungarian Grand Prix, taking the lead off the line from polesitter Lewis Hamilton to lead every lap.
Verstappen crossed the line with a whopping 33.7s lead over Lando Norris, who had to deal with a late fright from Sergio Perez for second before the Mexican was challenged by Hamilton for third at the end.
Hamilton was slower away off the line compared to Verstappen and attempted to bear right along the straight to defend, but could not prevent the championship leader from claiming the lead into the first corner.
Verstappen then began to stretch his newly acquired gap despite the array of tyre management being carried out amid the 29C heat, and spent the opening laps building up his advantage.
Lando Norris, who had passed Hamilton for third on a difficult opening lap for the seven-time champion, called into the pits at the end of lap 17 for a set of hard tyres, with Piastri to follow on the next lap.
But a rapid outlap allowed Norris to blast past his McLaren team-mate and claim a net second place, and the Briton's next few tours of the circuit ensured that he could build a buffer over his team-mate.
Verstappen then pitted at the end of lap 23 for the hard tyre, and Norris's collection of opening laps on that compound closed the gap between the front two to just 5.4 seconds.
Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing RB19, Oscar Piastri, McLaren MCL60, Lando Norris, McLaren MCL60, Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes F1 W14, Charles Leclerc, Ferrari SF-23, the rest of the field
Photo by: Zak Mauger / Motorsport Images
Norris was unable to maintain that level of pace and, once Verstappen had got to grips with the hard tyre, once again began to crack open the gap and started to go almost a second a lap faster.
By the 40th lap, Verstappen was a clear 15 seconds up the road and the advantage over Norris continued to grow, until McLaren elected to pit its lead driver at the end of lap 44 for a fresh set of mediums.
Red Bull extended Verstappen's tenure on track with the hards, and the Dutchman carried the tyres all the way to lap 51 before pitting for mediums.
The gap had shrunk slightly to 10.9s in Verstappen's favour by the end of lap 53 as Norris had been able to make the most of his own middle compound tyre, but a tilt at the fastest lap yielded a 1m20.504s for Verstappen to put the race beyond doubt.
Verstappen thus cemented Red Bull's 12th successive win of the season, beating the record of 11 set by McLaren in 1988.
Norris subsequently had his hands full attempting to keep Sergio Perez behind him, as the Mexican had undercut Hamilton during the second round of stops and then passed Piastri on lap 47 with a robust move into Turn 2.
As Perez sat behind by 6.3s with 15 laps remaining. Norris hence had to pick up the pace to try and maintain second. He managed to extend the gap to 6.9s after being given the hurry-up, but started to hurt as the lapped Yuki Tsunoda drew ever closer and allowed Perez to half the gap over the next two tours.
Lando Norris, McLaren MCL60, Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes F1 W14
Photo by: Zak Mauger / Motorsport Images
Once the two were both engulfed by traffic, Norris was able to stabilise and having cleared Nico Hulkenberg, had enough clear track to rebuild some of his advantage and had five seconds in hand with five laps to go.
Perez's place on the podium was then threatened by Hamilton's late fightback, as the Mercedes driver found great pace towards the close of the race and chiselled away at Perez despite his own traffic navigation.
Just 1.8s split the two with two laps remaining, but Hamilton could not find enough pace in the dying stages of the race and was denied the chance of a podium.
Piastri, who had figured in second during the opening phase of the race, could not maintain the pace beyond the first round of stops and fell down to fifth having been cleared by Perez and Hamilton on track.
Although the Australian tried to keep Perez at bay, staying around the outside at Turn 2, the current championship runner-up did not wish to concede position and held Piastri off - who complained that he hadn't been left much space.
Sergio Perez, Red Bull Racing RB19
Photo by: Zak Mauger / Motorsport Images
Bottas dropped spots at the start, as did team-mate Zhou Guanyu, who hit anti-stall and precipitated the first-corner accident that claimed both Alpines.
Zhou managed to get going but dropped down the order, subsequently misjudging his braking to nudge the back of the returning Daniel Ricciardo. This pushed Ricciardo into the back of Pierre Gasly, who could not help diving into team-mate Esteban Ocon and causing terminal damage for both Alpine cars.
F1 Hungarian GP race results
|1||M. Verstappen Max Verstappen Red Bull Racing||1||70||-||2||26||Red Bull||Red Bull|
|2||L. Norris Lando Norris McLaren||4||70||+33.731||33.731||2||18||McLaren||Mercedes|
|3||S. Perez Sergio Perez Red Bull Racing||11||70||+37.603||3.872||2||15||Red Bull||Red Bull|
|4||L. Hamilton Lewis Hamilton Mercedes||44||70||+39.134||1.531||2||12||Mercedes||Mercedes|
|5||O. Piastri Oscar Piastri McLaren||81||70||+1'02.572||23.438||2||10||McLaren||Mercedes|
|6||G. Russell George Russell Mercedes||63||70||+1'05.825||3.253||2||8||Mercedes||Mercedes|
|7||C. Leclerc Charles Leclerc Ferrari||16||70||+1'10.317||4.492||2||6||Ferrari||Ferrari|
|8||C. Sainz Carlos Sainz Ferrari||55||70||+1'11.073||0.756||2||4||Ferrari||Ferrari|
|9||F. Alonso Fernando Alonso Aston Martin Racing||14||70||+1'15.709||4.636||2||2||Aston Martin||Mercedes|
|10||L. Stroll Lance Stroll Aston Martin Racing||18||69||1 lap||2||1||Aston Martin||Mercedes|
|11||A. Albon Alex Albon Williams||23||69||1 lap||2||Williams||Mercedes|
|12||V. Bottas Valtteri Bottas Alfa Romeo||77||69||1 lap||2||Alfa Romeo||Ferrari|
|13||D. Ricciardo Daniel Ricciardo AlphaTauri||3||69||1 lap||2||AlphaTauri||Red Bull|
|14||N. Hulkenberg Nico Hulkenberg Haas F1 Team||27||69||1 lap||2||Haas||Ferrari|
|15||Y. Tsunoda Yuki Tsunoda AlphaTauri||22||69||1 lap||2||AlphaTauri||Red Bull|
|16||Z. Guanyu Zhou Guanyu Alfa Romeo||24||69||1 lap||2||Alfa Romeo||Ferrari|
|17||K. Magnussen Kevin Magnussen Haas F1 Team||20||69||1 lap||2||Haas||Ferrari|
|dnf||L. Sargeant Logan Sargeant Williams||2||67||3||Retirement||Williams||Mercedes|
|dnf||E. Ocon Esteban Ocon Alpine||31||2||1||Collision||Alpine||Renault|
|dnf||P. Gasly Pierre Gasly Alpine||10||1||1||Collision||Alpine||Renault|
|View full results|
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