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Max Verstappen leads to the 100th victory for Red Bull in Montreal

Max Verstappen leads to the 100th victory for Red Bull in Montreal

The Austrian Formula 1 Red Bull Racing team has achieved 100 victories in the motor racing category since Sunday. World Champion Max Verstappen made sure of this, winning comfortably from pole position in Montreal. Dutchman Fernando Alonso in an Aston Martin and Lewis Hamilton in a Mercedes relegated to the other podium. Only four other teams – Ferrari, McLaren, Mercedes and Williams – have previously achieved the 100 Grand Prix victory mark.

Defending champion Verstappen extended his lead up the championship standings as team-mate Sergio Perez was unable to get past sixth place at Circuit Gilles-Villeneuve. For Verstappen, it was the 41st Grand Prix victory, equaling three-time world champion Ayrton Senna’s life’s work. This season, the 25-year-old was victorious for the sixth time in the eighth race. The other two wins are at the expense of Perez.

“It wasn’t an easy race, the tires didn’t go into their window and we slipped a bit. But to win today, to win the 100th Grand Prix for the team, is amazing. I never expected to be like this,” Verstappen said happily. “On the other hand, Alonso said he hoped for more.” But we lost a place at the start and it was a battle with Mercedes. Lewis pushed the whole race, I didn’t have a single lap where I could relax.”

Hamilton looked happier, especially since Mercedes hadn’t calculated much beforehand in Canada. “It’s been a great weekend for us – we’re making slow progress. Astons have walked away from their upgrades but we’ll be introducing more soon. We knew it wasn’t going to be our strongest course as we struggled in slow corners,” said the Briton. “We need to give the car more downforce in the rear, but I think we’ll be able to do that at some point.”

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Red Bull had its first season in Formula 1 in 2005, Sebastian Vettel took his first victory in April 2009 in Shanghai. “It’s a shame he can’t try it anymore,” Helmut Marko said of Red Bull founder Dietrich Mateschitz, who died in 2022 and who bought the Jaguar team and redesigned it according to his ideas. “It was a big risk at the time. Our expectation was that we might win a Grand Prix,” the former intimate Mateschitz explained in an interview with ServusTV.

Alonso regained the second place he had lost

At the start, Alonso lost ground in the first few meters, and the Spaniard had to concede second place to Hamilton. The only disruption to normal operations was the safety car on lap 12, which had to be deployed after a crash involving fourth-placed George Russell. The Briton smashed his Mercedes into the wall on the right hand side, but managed to keep going. Only later did Russell have to give up the race. When the safety car stopped again, Alonso passed Hamilton on lap 23.

Meanwhile, Verstappen gradually pulled away from Alonso. The positions seemed firmly in place: the Ferrari duo of Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz was followed by Hamilton in fourth and fifth, followed by Perez in second and Red Bull in sixth. The distances between each of them were very comfortable. It got tighter between Alonso and Hamilton for second, but the Spaniard stayed ahead.

The ninth race of the season takes place in two weeks at the Red Bull Ring in Spielberg. Another race is scheduled for the day before the 36th Austrian Formula 1 Grand Prix on Sunday 2 July. He won the first prize in Paco Perez at the end of April.

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