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United States Grand Prix 2022

Verstappen seals Red Bull Constructors' Championship with record-equalling US GP win

Max Verstappen made a late pass on Lewis Hamilton to secure victory in the United States Grand Prix to seal the 2022 Constructors' Championship for Red Bull.

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Max Verstappen recovered from a botched Red Bull pitstop to win the United States Grand Prix, sealing the 2022 Constructors' Championship as he equalled the all-time wins record in a single season.

Verstappen pitted from the lead for the second time on Lap 36, responding to Lewis Hamilton's stop the lap before.

However, an 11.1 second pit stop from Red Bull dropped the World Champion down behind Charles Leclerc, with Hamilton enjoying a seven second lead at the time.

After clearing Leclerc, Verstappen hunted down Hamilton, slicing past at Turn 12 on Lap 50 of 56.

Despite some late track limits drama involving the top two, Verstappen took his 13th win of the season - equalling Michael Schumacher and Sebastian Vettel's tally from the 2004 and 2013 seasons.

It is also Red Bull's first teams' title since 2013, as Mercedes' run of eight-straight titles since 2014 came to an end.

Charles Leclerc recovered to take third from 12th on the grid, as pole-sitter Carlos Sainz retired after first-lap contact with George Russell.

Verstappen makes the stronger getaway

At lights out, Verstappen got the jump on Sainz to take the lead, with the Ferrari bogging down.

Russell locked up into Turn 1 and T-boned the Ferrari driver, who was forced to retire with a water leak as Verstappen set off into the lead, pulling out a 3.7s gap on the pack. He was followed by Hamilton, Russell, Sergio Perez and the Aston Martin of Lance Stroll close behind.

Hamilton pitted on Lap 13 for the Hard tyres, with Verstappen responding by pitting on the next lap, with the lead growing to 6.3s by the end of Lap 18.

The race was then neutralised after Valtteri Bottas spun off at Turn 19 in the Alfa Romeo to bring out the Safety Car.

This allowed cheap pitstops for Leclerc and Sebastian Vettel who had gone long, with the race resuming on Lap 22 of 56.

However, on the restart, Stroll jinked to the left on the main straight, and was rammed by Fernando Alonso, who got airborne but was able to recover back to the pits. The Safety Car was again deployed for the debris and wrecked Aston Martin.

The race restarted for a second time on Lap 25, but Verstappen complained of drivability problems as Hamilton kept him honest, before diving for a fresh set of Hards on Lap 35.

When Verstappen pitted next time by, a slow left-front tyre change cost Verstappen a position to Leclerc, as Hamilton inherited the 'net' lead once Vettel briefly led - surprising 3,500 laps led in his career in the process.

Verstappen then dealt with Leclerc at Turn 12 on Lap 39, passing Hamilton for the lead 11 laps later to cement the win - the 33rd of his career, and fifth Constructors' Crown for Red Bull.

Leclerc took an anonymous third with Perez fourth and Russell taking fifth in the second Mercedes.

Alonso recovers from Stroll collision

Despite his airborne trip over the back of Stroll, Alonso was set for a sixth place finish, before a late charge from Lando Norris banked the 'best of the rest' accolade for the McLaren.

Norris rose from 12th as late as Lap 43 to scythe through the field to take the position on the last lap from Alonso - who was seventh.

Vettel's race was ruined through his own slow pitstop - 16.8s that dropped him to P13 - but, using the fresher rubber, he managed to get back into the points, and passed Kevin Magnussen at Turn 19 on the final lap to secure eighth place in his final US Grand Prix.

Magnussen one-stopped for Haas to ninth place, going most of the race on a set of Mediums, with Yuki Tsunoda taking the final point for AlphaTauri.

Gasly penalised for Safety Car infringement

Esteban Ocon was 11th after a late pit stop for Alpine, as Alex Albon fell out of the points late on to take 12th for Williams.

Zhou Guanyu was 13th in his first US Grand Prix, with Pierre Gasly slapped with a five-second penalty for being more than 10 car lengths behind during a Safety Car period. He did not serve the penalty correctly, and so had to pit again.

Mick Schumacher, Daniel Ricciardo, and Nicholas Latifi were the final finishers, with three retirements in Stroll, Bottas and Sainz.

Also interesting:

F1 Podcast: Do F1's rules on championship points in shortened races need modifying?

RacingNews365.com F1 journalists Dieter Rencken and Michael Butterworth discuss the key issues from the Japanese Grand Prix, including Max Verstappen's dominant run to his second World Championship, and whether F1's current system of awarding points in shortened races needs tweaking.


F1 2022 United States Grand Prix RN365 News dossier

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