American GP 2023: Verstappen wins the sprint race
Max leads from start to finish in Austin
It is 33 degrees in Texas when the 2023 American GP sprint race starts. Everyone starts the nineteen lap race on the medium tire, except Carlos Sainz: he goes for softs. Max Verstappen gets away well from 1st place and immediately closes the door on Charles Leclerc, from which Hamilton benefits: with his upgraded Mercedes he immediately overtakes the Ferrari driver.
While Verstappen and Hamilton are opening up a gap, there is a lot of struggle elsewhere in the field. The Aston Martins go through a corner side by side and Pérez does his best from 7th place to pass the two McLarens in front of him. George Russell, who was moved back three places for impeding Leclerc in the shootout, follows closely and waits. Then Pérez passes Piastri – and a few corners later Russell does the same. However, he drives outside the track and does not give back his place - he receives a 5-second penalty.
Verstappen drives away
After five laps, Hamilton is less than a second behind Verstappen. The Dutchman complains about rear grip, but is told that this may have to do with the wind. Meanwhile, Hamilton clicks over the radio that he sees Verstappen exceeding the track limits. That apparently costs him his concentration, because not much later the gap between the two is suddenly more than 2 seconds. Lando Norris overtakes Carlos Sainz for 4th place, but Sainz has more grip with his softs when accelerating and immediately takes back the spot. A few laps later, as Sainz's tires deteriorated, the Briton got it done.
At the back of the field we see Tsunoda and Magnussen, among others, making things difficult for each other, while Oscar Piastri receives a black and white flag for exceeding the track limits several times. Sainz seems like an easy target: Pérez also overtakes him, with the Mexican helping himself into the top 5. Later, Russell also tries to outwit the Ferrari, but upon exiting Turn 1, Sainz immediately regains the position. He just needs to keep his tires alive for a little while and he will succeed.
Max Verstappen wins the sprint race of the 2023 American GP
The reigning champion once again appears to be supreme: with a lead of more than 9 seconds over Lewis Hamilton, Max Verstappen wins the sprint race of the 2023 American GP. Leclerc, the pole sitter at tomorrow's GP, comes third, followed by Lando Norris and Sergio Pérez.
Max Verstappen Lewis Hamilton Charles Leclerc Lando Norris Sergio Pérez Carlos Sainz Pierre Gasly George Russell Alexander Albon Oscar Piastri Esteban Ocon Daniel Ricciardo Fernando Alonso Yuki Tsunoda Nico Hülkenberg Valtteri Bottas Zhou Guanyu Kevin Magnussen Logan Sargeant Lance Stroll ## What time does F1 start in America?
Sunday Race: 9:00 PM