Max Verstappen leads every lap in Canadian Grand Prix victory

MONTREAL, QUEBEC - JUNE 18: Max Verstappen of the Netherlands driving the (1) Oracle Red Bull Racing RB19 on track during the F1 Grand Prix of Canada at Circuit Gilles Villeneuve on June 18, 2023 in Montreal, Quebec.  (Photo by Bryn Lennon - Formula 1/Formula 1 via Getty Images)

Max Verstappen led every lap of the Canadian Grand Prix. (Photo by Bryn Lennon – Formula 1/Formula 1 via Getty Images)

Max Verstappen took his sixth victory in eight races as he led the 70 laps of the Canadian Grand Prix.

Verstappen started first and easily took the lead into Turn 1 ahead of Lewis Hamilton and Fernando Alonso. He then sprinted off the field again after a safety car for George Russell’s crash early in the race and was unthreatened during the Grand Prix.

Alonso finished second after passing Hamilton shortly after the restart. Hamilton finished the race on a set of medium compound tires on Alonso’s car’s hard tyres, but Alonso was able to pull away in the final 10 laps after Hamilton closed in as Alonso managed the brakes of his car.

The Ferrari duo of Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz finished fourth and fifth after a one-stop strategy in their favour. Leclerc and Sainz started outside the top five but progressed through the safety car period when they weren’t in the pits. They were each able to stretch their starting set of medium tires for 30 laps before stopping for hard compound tires to run the rest of the race.

Verstappen, Alonso and Hamilton all stung twice, as did much of the rest of the field.

Russell got back into the top 10 at one point before having to retire with brake issues. He finished 19th ahead of Logan Sargeant.

The main way for the teams at the back of the field to find a position on the track was pit strategy, as a huge DRS train had formed outside the front six during the last half of the race. Alex Alton led this train and managed to steal a seventh place ahead of Esteban Ocon, Lando Norris and Valtteri Bottas. Norris, however, officially finished 13th thanks to a five-second penalty.

Verstappen’s victory extends his points lead over teammate Sergio Perez to a staggering 70 points after Perez finished sixth. Perez has 125 points to Verstappen’s 195 as Alonso closed the gap to six points behind Perez in third. Hamilton is 14 points behind Alonso in fourth.

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