Red Bull’s Max Verstappen won Formula One’s Brazilian Grand Prix for his eighth career victory in a race which ended badly for both Ferrari drivers.
It also finished poorly for six-time world champion Lewis Hamilton, who caused Red Bull’s Alexander Albon to spin near the end and deprived him of his first podium. A post-race five-second punishment for Hamilton demoted the Mercedes driver from third to seventh place.
Brazil marked Verstappen’s third win this season, after victories in Austria and Germany. He started from pole position in Sao Paulo — the second pole of his career.
The result moved the 22-year-old Verstappen to third place in the driver’s championship, already won by Hamilton. Verstappen is 11 points ahead of Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc with only the Abu Dhabi GP on Dec. 1 to go.
The victory in Brazil gives some relief to Verstappen, who in 2018 led here for much of the race but finished second after touching backmarker Esteban Ocon’s car. The Dutch driver had an angry altercation with Ocon afterward, and the race was won by Hamilton.
This year was different, with Verstappen appearing mostly unstoppable all weekend long.
Unlike the Ferraris. A dramatic late collision on the 66th lap at Interlagos between four-time champion Sebastian Vettel and Leclerc happened when they were fighting for fourth position. Both failed to finish.
On team radio, Vettel blamed Leclerc for a puncture that caused him to stop. Leclerc was forced out shortly after. The light contact gave Vettel a right-rear puncture, while Leclerc had a broken suspension.
After the race, both drivers said they were “disappointed,” but refused to expand on what had happened between them.