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Max Verstappen

Verstappen explains the key to his strong recovery

Max Verstappen was relieved to recover to second place in the Qatar GP after being given a pre-race grid penalty.

Verstappen Qatar
To news overview © Red Bull Contentpool

Max Verstappen was happy to have recovered to second in the Qatar Grand Prix, after starting the race from seventh on the grid.

Having qualified in second place originally, the Red Bull driver was given a five-place grid penalty before the race for failing to slow sufficiently for yellow flags at the end of Q3.

Verstappen responded well to make a strong start to the race, clearing three cars by the time the field powered out of Turn 1, before picking off AlphaTauri's Pierre Gasly and Alpine's Fernando Alonso to move up to second.

From there, Verstappen tried his best to get closer to title rival Lewis Hamilton out front but could never get within range of his title rival.

"Our starting position was a bit compromised but, luckily, we had a really good start and I was quite quickly back into second," he explained afterwards.

Having scored the fastest lap point, Verstappen ensured that Hamilton only closed in six points in the Drivers' Championship - a potentially critical two-point swing in the title chase.

"At the end of it to get that fastest lap was very nice," he commented.

"I know it's going to be difficult to the end, but that keeps it exciting!"

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