How did Leclerc overcame Verstappen in an exciting Austrian GP?

Leclerc shines at Red Bull ring

We are done with round 11 of the Formula 1- 2022 season, and it was the Scuderia Ferrari and Charles Leclerc who outshone Red Bull and Max Verstappen. There were many key points to note from the Grand Prix. Here are some key moments and a review of how the race unfolded.

Leclerc’s magical effort:

After getting a decent start, we saw Max Verstappen taking the lead in the race. It seemed to be yet another easy win for Max after he made a lead of more than one second at the opening lap itself. But soon after, we saw Leclerc coming down at Verstappen. The charge from Leclerc began from the 4th lap and overtook Max for the lead later in the 12th lap. 

Charles overtake Max for lead at turn 4 on lap 12.

We would later see Charles overtaking Max 2 more times for the lead. After overtaking Max for the third time on lap 53, it seemed to be smooth sailing for Charles with only 18 more laps to go. 

However, after Sainz’s DNF, Charles also started experiencing some problems with the throttle in the later stages of the race. This problem caused the lead of Leclerc to come down from 4 seconds to under 2 seconds in the end. But even after the issues, Leclerc held his nerve and came home to secure his 3rd win of the season, keeping Max at bay and settling for P2.

Perez early collision:

Sergio Perez got involved in an early collision at turn 4 of the opening lap. After attempting an overtake around the outside of George Russell at turn 4, the duo came together. The right rear of Perez collided with the front left of Russell, because of which Perez spun onto the gravel.

Perez spins off into the Turn 4 gravel after contact with Russell.

Due to the collision, Perez not only dropped to the back of the grid but also caused damage to his car. This damage would later see Perez retire from the race on lap 26. A race to forget for Perez. Russell also received a 5 second time penalty for causing the collision.

Unlucky evening for Sainz:

Ferrari’s reliability issues continued as we saw the engine of Carlos Ferrari blow out at lap 57 while he was trying to overtake Max Verstappen down the third straight at turn 4.

A deserted Carlos Sainz sits outside the track after a power unit failure ruined his race.

Not only this DNF ruined the race of Sainz, but it also rounded off Ferrari’s chance for a strong one, two on the podium. With the pace Ferrari was showing today, it was almost inevitable that Sainz would’ve to overhaul Max Verstappen in the next couple of laps. However, the engine blow-up ruined his chance of getting another podium for the Scuderia.

Midfield battles:

If there were battles going on in the front of the pack, there were even more intriguing battles going on in the middle. We saw 3 teams fighting hard for points throughout the race in the mid. The Haas, McLaren and the alpine. At one point, we saw three cars going side by side into turn one. Norris, Ocon, Magnussen, Schumacher, and Zhou were going all out and squeezed into turn 3. Five cars were coming together into turn 3!

5 cars fighting for points at turn 3 on Lap 25.

Midfield story was great for Haas, with both drivers finishing in points yet again, with Schumacher coming home with a stunning P6 and even getting the driver of the Day! Magnussen also scored an appreciable P8.

Alonso concluded the race with P10 for Alpine after starting at the end of the grid. Ocon also finished an incredible P5.

Both McLaren drivers scored points, with Ricciardo getting P9 and Norris scoring P7. Both drivers enjoyed the medium-hard strategy’s renewed car pace.

Mercedes’s consistency continues:

It was a day of another podium for Mercedes and Lewis Hamilton. Mercedes’s consistent performance continues with both drivers coming home in P3 and P4. Although Mercedes’s race pace was not on par with red bull and Ferrari, their reliable cars are keeping them in good shape for the title. 

Lewis Hamilton scored a Podium on Sunday

Mercedes is 3rd in the constructor’s Championship after the Austrian GP with George Russel at 5th in the Driver standings, just 5 points behind Carlos Sainz. With Flexi floor controversy incoming for Red Bull and Ferrari, which might or might not have an effect on them, it keeps Mercedes well within the title fighting contention. 

Max’s race pace:

Max Verstappen seemed tremendously off the pace this evening. The red bull is getting overtaken thrice by his championship rival Leclerc. In all three instances, it seemed a pretty easy job for Charles to overtake Max. The championship leader seemed to be easy prey for the Ferraris. Both the Ferraris seemed much faster than the Red Bull.

Verstappen being chased by Leclerc. The Dutch struggled to match the race pace of the Scuderia.

Red bull also played a strategic blunder with an early pit stop on lap 13. As it seems, the tyres were wearing much faster in the Red bull, with Max complaining about grip multiple times. The early pit stop came as a result of the overtake of Charles Leclerc on lap 12. After all, it was a long race with 71 laps and much more tyre wear. 

Austrian GP race results:

1Charles LeclercFerrari25
2Max VerstappenRed Bull19
3Lewis HamiltonMercedes15
4George RussellMercedes12
5Esteban OconAlpine10
6Mick SchumacherHaas8
7Lando NorrisMcLaren6
8Kevin MagnussenHaas4
9Daniel RicciardoMcLaren2
10Fernando AlonsoAlpine1
11Valtteri BottasAlfa Romeo0
12Alexander AlbonWilliams0
13Lance StrollAston Martin0
14Zhou GuanyuAlfa Romeo0
15Pierre GaslyAlpha Tauri0
16Yuki TsunodaAlpha Tauri0
17Sebastian VettelAston Martin0
18Carlos SainzFerrariDNF
19Nicholas LatifiWilliamsDNF
20Sergio PerezRed BullDNF

Stay Tuned with The Sportway for more updates!

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