Red Bull take stranglehold of F1’s title after Mexican cruise

A double podium for the Tilbrook team puts them in pole position with four races remaining

Monday, 8th November 2021, 9:47 am

Max Verstappen took a simple victory in Mexico while home-crowd hero Sergio Perez claimed third spot as Red Bull Racing took over the lead in the constructor’s championship

Red Bull Racing took charge of both championships on Sunday with a dominant performance at the Mexican Grand Prix.

Despite starting behind Mercedes’ front-row lock-out on Saturday, Max Verstappen sailed around the outside of Valtteri Bottas and title rival Lewis Hamilton at the first braking zone to take the lead, while crownd favourite Sergio Perez claimed third after Bottas was pitched into a spin by McLaren’s Daniel Ricciardo.

Despite appearing to struggle in qualifying, Verstappen stretched his legs at the front to claim his third Mexican GP victory with ease, while Perez kept Hamilton honest in second spot, never letting the seven-time champion breathe as he stayed within striking distance for the majority of the 71-lap race but could not make a move on the Mercedes.

Verstappen’s championship lead now stands at 19 points, while Red Bull’s double-points finish saw them take the lead in the constructor’s championship too, now leading Mercedes by a point.

“It was an incredible day for the team and also for the fans, to have Checo on the podium here in Mexico at his home Grand Prix was great, so it couldn’t have been better,” said race winner Verstappen. “I knew the start was very important today, we were three wide at one point and I was on the more ideal race line so I could brake later and get into the lead.

“After that I could do my own thing, the pace was very good today so I could just keep building and creating a gap, the pit stops were seamless and the car was good throughout the race which was crucial today.”

Perez added: “This is a great result for my country, I really wanted more but unfortunately we didn’t get that. It was so messy in turn one so to avoid incident there was critical and then I wanted second place, but we didn’t get the chance because it is just so difficult to overtake around here.

“I was really close to getting Lewis but the Mercedes are so quick on the straight lines so I didn’t get a opportunity to go for it but I gave my best. I could feel the fans energy when I was going through the stadium sector and I was thinking about how many people were here for me, I could actually hear the crowd when I was driving through Foro Sol.

“I wanted more but I am just very happy to be on the podium of my home country, the Mexicans were so happy today.”