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Mexican Grand Prix 2023

Verstappen cruises to historic Mexican GP win as Perez crashes out

Max Verstappen broke his own record for most wins in a season with victory in Mexico as Lewis Hamilton finished second and Charles Leclerc third with Sergio Perez retiring.

Verstappen Leclerc Mexico
To news overview © Red Bull Content Pool

Max Verstappen claimed a record 16th victory of the season as he won a red-flagged Mexico City Grand Prix as team-mate Sergio Perez crashed at Turn 1.

The race at the Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez was effectively split in half with a red flag deployed on Lap 34 following a high-speed accident for Kevin Magnussen leading to barrier repairs, with the field lining up for a standing restart on Lap 36 of 71.

Verstappen who grabbed the lead on the run to Turn 1 of the first start restarted on the Hard tyres, ahead of Charles Leclerc and Lewis Hamilton - and quickly scampered off into the distance as Leclerc and Hamilton battled over second place.

The World Champion eased away for his 16th win to eclipse his own record of 15 from last season ahead of Hamilton - who passed Leclerc at Turn 1 on the grass on Lap 40 - with the pole-sitter banking a podium.

Carlos Sainz was fourth with Lando Norris charging back to fifth place as George Russell was sixth ahead of Daniel Ricciardo scoring points for AlphaTauri in seventh.

The race was a disaster for home favourite Perez following first-corner contact with Leclerc with the Red Bull suffering severe floor and sidepod damage that put him out of the race.

Result Race - Mexican

# Driver Team Time Tyre
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Perez out at Turn 1

At lights out, Leclerc bogged down slightly from pole position as Verstappen bravely squeezed between the two Ferraris to hug the inside on the 811m run to down to Turn 1.

Perez, on the racing line, tried to go around the outside to sweep into Turn 1, but Leclerc had nowhere to go as the Red Bull was pitched into the air and the run-off. He did make it back to the pits, but the damage was too severe to continue.

Verstappen led from Leclerc, Sainz, Ricciardo and Hamilton, with the lead Ferrari suffering front-wing end-plate damage in the contact - receiving a summons for driving a car in unsafe conditions before it detached.

Hamilton quickly passed Ricciardo as Verstappen complained of tyre wear and pitted for the first time for a set of Hards on Lap 19, rejoining seventh as Ferrari elected to run long with both drivers - something Leclerc and Sainz agreed with.

On Lap 25, Hamilton pitted to undercut Sainz, with the Spaniard not responding until Lap 30, allowing the Mercedes to take the position with Leclerc only emerging just ahead of the seven-time champion following his own stop.

However, the race was soon suspended on Lap 34 following a high-speed crash for Magnussen at Turn 9.

The rear suspension appeared to break on the Haas as he turned into the right-hander, pitching him into the TecPro barrier on the left-hand side. A red flag followed for barrier repairs, as the field switched tyres and Leclerc received a new front-wing.

On the restart, Verstappen checked out as Hamilton scythed past Leclerc after chasing for five laps with the champion winning his 31st Grand Prix since the start of 2022.

			© XPBimages
	© XPBimages

Norris on a charge

Starting on the Soft tyre, McLaren pitted Norris early for clean air and a switch to Hards, as he climbed to 10th for the red flag restart - armed with Medium tyres.

However, a poor start cost him four places as he soon recovered and went on a charge, passing team-mate Piastri and barging past Ricciardo at Turn 4 and set off after Russell for fifth.

With four laps remaining, Norris caught Russell into Turn 4, and with the Mercedes out of position, Norris dived up the inside of Turn 6 to nab fifth - but ran out of laps to pass Sainz.

Ricciardo was seventh, ahead of Piastri, Alex Albon and Esteban Ocon who nicked the final point from Nico Hulkenberg as both he and Alpine team-mate Pierre Gasly passed the Haas.

Logan Sargeant was 13th, Yuki Tsunoda 14th following contact with Piastri that dropped him out of the points, with Valtteri Bottas and Zhou Guanyu the last two finishers in 15th and 16th.

There was a late brief yellow after contact between Bottas and Lance Stroll in the stadium section with the Aston Martin retiring to cap a miserable weekend for the team with Fernando Alonso also dropping out.

The other non-finishers were Magnussen and Perez.

			© RN365/Michael Potts
	© RN365/Michael Potts

F1 2023 Mexican Grand Prix RN365 News dossier

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