SportF1Verstappen, even more leader: "I would say another easy...

Verstappen, even more leader: "I would say another easy race"

Max Verstappen’s weekend did not start in the best possible way, as the Dutchman was stuck with his RB18 in the opening moments of free practice due to gearbox problems. However, the defending world champion recovered from setbacks and managed to be a clear candidate for pole position on Saturday.

In the qualifying session he beat the Ferrari duo by just thousandths and, how could it be otherwise, he was very smiling in the subsequent interviews, although he was aware that the points were shared on Sunday.

Already in the race, Verstappen defended the lead at the start, and despite the attempt to harass Charles Leclerc, he kept a cool head at all times, even when the various incidents that jeopardized his victory occurred. The one-stop strategy of the Mercedes with the hard tire opened the Dutchman’s doubt, but he responded with maneuvers at the height of what he is, the reigning champion.

After the resumption of the last safety car due to the abandonment of Valtteri Bottas, the Red Bull car overtook Lewis Hamilton and escaped to cross the finish line, achieving his 30th victory in Formula 1, just two away from overtaking another great name in the grill, that of Fernando Alonso.

“Another easy race I would say,” Verstappen replied when asked after getting out of the car how the Zandvoort test went. “We had to push the whole race. Of course, with the safety car and the virtual safety car, getting the pit stops at the right time is always a question mark.”

“But it worked very well. Once we got back on the soft tires we had great pace,” continued the Dutchman, before revealing that he had some doubts during the 72-lap round in Holland. “Before the safety car I thought I could continue to the end on the hard tyres, although we were a bit slower, but then the safety car came out and I didn’t think we could continue with options if we didn’t pit.

“So we went for the soft tyres, although I dropped back to third. Then George [Russell] came into the pitlane as well, but I had a really good pace on the restart,” said the world leader.

“We had a bit more top speed, which helped us attack into the first corner, and from there we’ve got a good balance back in the car. We timed the exit of the last corner into the banking very well, ahead, so it’s amazing to win again,” he explained in reference to his wheel-to-wheel moment with Lewis Hamilton .

Max Verstappen is outstandingly in first place in the drivers’ standings, and has practically sealed his second world title : “It’s always special to win the home grand prix, it was last year, and now this year, I have I have to say that I had to work even harder. So yeah, an amazing weekend and I’m really happy to have won the Dutch Grand Prix.”

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