Max Verstappen, the reigning Formula 1 champion, dominated the Las Vegas Grand Prix, securing his 18th victory of the season. This incredible feat helped Red Bull achieve a remarkable 20 wins in 2023, setting a new record for a single Formula 1 team.
Verstappen's dominance was evident throughout the race, despite receiving a five-second penalty for forcing Charles Leclerc off the track at the start. The Dutch driver displayed unwavering determination, regaining his position and reclaiming the lead from Leclerc in the 16th lap.
The Las Vegas Grand Prix was filled with excitement and drama, keeping the spectators on the edge of their seats. A collision between Verstappen and George Russell brought out the safety car, providing an unexpected opportunity for Red Bull's Sergio Perez to close the gap on Leclerc.
Perez capitalized on this strategic twist, overtaking Leclerc on lap 32 and briefly holding onto second place. However, Leclerc, known for his never-say-die spirit, refused to give up. In a thrilling display of racing prowess, he regained the position from Perez just as Verstappen cruised towards a comfortable victory.
The first three drivers dominated the track
Behind the top three, a fierce battle ensued for the remaining podium positions. Esteban Ocon in Alpine emerged as the best of the rest, followed by Aston Martin's Lance Stroll, Carlos Sainz in the second Ferrari, and seven-time world champion Lewis Hamilton.
Russell, penalized for his earlier incident with Verstappen, was relegated to eighth place.
Lando Norris hit the guard rail
In addition to the incident between Verstappen and Russell, another one led to the exit of the safety car on the track, and it happened in the third lap, when McLaren driver Lando Norris lost control of the car.
The Briton hit the guardrail, spun on the track and then became a passenger in his car which came to a stop in the staging area. Norris got out of the car without any problems, but was taken to the hospital for examinations.
The Las Vegas Grand Prix, the first Formula 1 race in the city since 1981, lived up to its expectations, providing a captivating spectacle of speed, strategy, and scintillating racing. Verstappen's triumph further solidified his status as one of the sport's most dominant drivers, while Red Bull's record-breaking season will forever be etched in the annals of Formula 1 history.