Formula 1: Max Verstappen extends points lead to 19 as he wins Mexico Grand Prix ahead of Lewis Hamilton

·2 min read

Red Bull's Max Verstappen didn't look back after taking the lead on the first lap of the Mexico Grand Prix and now has an even bigger points lead on reigning champion Lewis Hamilton. 

Verstappen started third and passed both Hamilton and his Mercedes teammate Valtteri Bottas on the first corner after a draft from the two Mercedes cars down the front straight. Verstappen wasn't passed for the lead on track for the rest of the grand prix as Hamilton finished a distant second ahead of Verstappen's Red Bull teammate Sergio Perez.

Perez tried to pass Hamilton for the last 10 laps of the 71-lap race but couldn't make the pass happen.

Hamilton trailed Verstappen by 12 points entering the race. He now faces a 19-point deficit to Verstappen after scoring 18 points to Verstappen's 25 for winning the race. Verstappen was set to get an extra point for the fastest lap but Mercedes pitted Bottas to steal the fastest lap of the race.

Bottas was out of the top 10 and the points scoring positions so Mercedes had an easy decision to pit him for fresh tires to keep Verstappen from getting that point. Bottas got spun in the first corner of the race by Daniel Ricciardo as he went from first to 18th in the course of the first 30 seconds of the race.

That incident and the ensuing chaos ended the races of Yuki Tsunoda and Mick Schumacher. It also put Ricciardo out of the points after he started in the top 10. 

There are four races to go in the 2021 Formula 1 season. The series races at Brazil next week and then Qatar in two weeks before a week break and races in Saudi Arabia and Abu Dhabi to end the year. 

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