German Grand Prix was 'all about survival' for winner Verstappen
Max Verstappen was delighted, if not relieved, to take the chequered flag in Germany on Sunday.
In a chaotic race, prompted by changing weather conditions, Verstappen survived a 360 spin to take his second win of the year, while others around him faltered.
Slipping down the order at the start, suffering wheel spin on the line, the Dutchman recovered to claim victory, despite making five pit-stops - though it was the order of the day.
"The conditions were very tricky and it was all about survival. It was definitely not an easy race and very tricky with the changing conditions. The team made all the right calls. They were giving me the right information and keeping an eye on all the other teams and sector times.
"I don’t know exactly what happened at the start but it seemed that everyone on the right side of the grid had a bad getaway and low grip. I had a particularly poor start when I released the clutch but stayed calm and followed the Mercedes cars closely. It was hard to pass due to the dirty air and the tyres started to struggle as the track dried. From there onwards we always made the right decisions.
"Even though the first slick tyre was maybe a bit hard and I had a few moments, with a 360 spin, I luckily kept going. Once I was back on the Intermediates and in the lead I was able to control the race and really show the pace of the car. Once you are ahead you can take a few less risks and everything feels a bit nicer.
"It has been one of my most difficult races and it is great to come out on top. For sure I enjoy driving in the wet but also you need a good car for that. You can find a bit of pace in yourself but today we had both things right and I’m very happy with the result."
It was a day to forget for Pierre Gasly though. With speculation continuing to swirl around his future, Gasly was vying with Alex Albon for sixth spot when the Frenchman collided with the Thai driver, who lives in Willen, eliminating him with two laps to go.
To add even more pressure on Gasly, Daniil Kvyat, who is linked to a return to Red Bull to replace him, took third place.
Gasly said: "That was an insane, crazy race and it just had everything. With the rain, crashes, safety cars and pit stops, it was a lottery and there were a lot of opportunities so I’m quite disappointed not to have made the most of it on my side and not finish the race.
"Towards the end, I was fighting with Alex during the last few laps and we made contact, which took my front wing off and gave me a puncture, so I had to stop the car. I don’t know what to say but it’s annoying not to score points when you have a race like this."