Verstappen Wins Dutch Grand Prix!

Dutch Grand Prix

Sunday was a historic day for Formula 1 as they returned to Circuit Park Zandvoort for the first time in years. Dutch native Max Verstappen took the poll on Saturday and earned the victory on race day! Standing on the first-place podium, the normally steely eyed Verstappen showed just a glimpse of emotion. He is only 23 years old and has passed the milestone of leading 1000 laps. He also has 16 Grand Prix victories and is back on top in the World Championship standings. At the end of the race Leclerc and Gasely paid their respects to Verstappen, ignoring Hamilton. No doubt they can’t wait till Lewis retires so the younger generation can have their shot at joining their peer on podium. Undoubtedly George Russell will get that honor when Mercedes moves off Bottas.

There is trouble in the Mercedes garage, but that is nothing new. First Lewis was not happy in changing to used medium tires. They gambled and lost. Lewis voiced his displeasure while on the track. Further, they pulled Bottas off the track inexplicably and then told him to NOT go for the fastest lap! Valtteri Bottas is a good teammate. He wants to win but understands his role to support Lewis when the opportunity to do so is there. He does it grudgingly, but still, he does it. Lewis showed his brilliance in getting the fastest lap in the last lap of the race. When Bottas earned fastest lap with just a few laps to go, Lewis quickly chirped that he needed that point then he went out and got it! That still doesn’t make up for any perceived mismanagement by the team principal and engineer. Frankly I think the team gambled and lost. That happens in racing.

For me, Perez was really the driver of the day. He started in pit lane and raced to 8th place. Zandvoort is a very difficult track to overtake on and Perez went from last to 8th.
The first 5 on the starting grid all finished where they started. Alonso moved up from 9th to 6th and Norris finished 10th place after starting in 13th. McLaren has fallen off the pace lately. Something is going on with their cars and the team needs to get it figured out or Ferrari will overtake them in the Constructors Championship. Ferrari is showing more consistency so it will be interesting to see how they perform at Monza. All in all, the race finished about where we all expected it to. Expect Mercedes to have a stronger showing at Monza where they will be able to stretch their legs a bit more.

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