It was a delightful race on an old-fashioned track. Nothing was lacking in the rain, with very high-end scenes in Imola, where
scored his first win of the year ahead of
. Nothing can be objected to the resounding victory of the Dutchman, nor to the comeback of the seven-time champion, nor to the exquisite driving of the young McLaren. Everyone can happily leave the Autodromo Enzo and Dino Ferrari, where
were left wanting the podium, while
sailed in no man's land.
The Asturian's eleventh place, 22 laps behind his teammate
, should make Alpine reflect, whose aerodynamic improvements did not find a single backing on the track. Better conclusions can be drawn at Ferrari, despite the fact that the SF-21 could not find hunting rhythm against Norris. Sainz, eleventh on the grid, combined moments of beautiful inspiration with a couple of gross misses. In any case, his fifth place at the finish line, in the wake of Leclerc, is another step forward.
It was a career for guys like Carlos, serious and professional.
Half an hour before the start, it had started to rain and the firm slide favored the aggressiveness of Verstappen, who really pressed in Tamburello, leaving Hamilton an excursion through the pianos.
It was a tremendous pulse, worthy of the category of contenders.
The stewards were limited to noting the incident, just one more in a tangle of which Sainz was able to extract slice, gaining positions against
At Ferrari they could well be satisfied, as Leclerc spun off the Acque Minerali, very close to the gravel.
'Stop and go' for Pérez
A touch with
destroyed the options of
and caused the exit of the
. The track was still so
stamped on the finish straight, with heavy damage to the front wing. Not even Alonso could temper the spirits, engrossed in the short distance with
and Ocon. Just when 20 laps were completed, the two-time champion was dubbed by Verstappen.
While the sky gave a truce, Sainz squeezed the males in search of the comeback. After all
, who had to change his extreme rain tires,
had gotten out of the way
and benefited from the
stop and go
, due to an illegal overtaking. The Madrilenian rolled almost to the rhythm of the head, although a couple of errors cut his flight. In Tossa and Rivazza many of their options were lost to gravel. At least on lap 26 he was able to get rid of
Shortly before, Vettel had been the first brave man to change the water tires for the yellow dry compound.
Identical plan to the favorites, with Verstappen protecting his lead against Hamilton, who was already looming less than two seconds away.
Coincidence or not, the truth is that with the new tire everything was literally turned upside down.
Hamilton was rolling behind some bends when he lost his patience at Tosa.
A fatal mistake, unbecoming of its category, which at least it was able to correct with an astonishing reverse maneuver.
Relegated to ninth place, the victory slipped away for Mercedes, who also lost Bottas a few meters behind.
The accident on the way to the
shook all of Imola.
The Finn wanted to keep his place, when
stepped on the grass and slammed him against the wall.
With countless pieces on the asphalt,
ordered a red flag.
All cars to the
and overhang behind the
Norris, ahead of Pérez, Sainz and Norris.AFP
There would be plenty of incentives for the remaining 24 laps, with many guests fighting for the podium.
Hamilton, squeezing the McLaren and Ferraris from behind;
Pérez, failing at the most inopportune moment;
Norris and Leclerc, sharpening knives in delicious denouement.
McLaren had opted for red tires, a point faster, although less durable than Ferrari's yellow ones.
drivers clung to that factor
Sainz held onto Hamilton once, but couldn't hold him back the next.
More or less like Leclerc, perfectly aware that his target was Norris's rear wing.
He couldn't get there either, because the kid was blowing up the papaya car.
In his power, he finished, with full merit, the MVP of the race.
According to the criteria of The Trust Project
Carlos Sainz Jr
Formula 1 Verstappen cedes victory to Hamilton after strange FIA decision
Formula 1The hope of Alonso and Sainz: the factors that point to a more even World Cup
Formula 1 'Pole' for Hamilton at Imola after an ugly step back from Sainz and Alonso
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