Max Verstappen and Red Bull Racing wrapped up the 2022 Constructor’s title in Texas as Mercedes and Ferrari put up a thrilling fight
Hamilton’s second-place finish was his 189th career podium and 17th points finish for the season!
ROUND 19 HAD all the elements of a classic Grand Prix. Multiple Safety Car interventions, polesitter knocked out at Turn 1, spectacular crashes and bold passes till the flag, and lastly, Verstappen notching up his 13th win of the season in front of a 440,000 record crowd in Austin, USA.
Also read: Championship leader Max Verstappen denies Ferrari and Charles Leclerc a home win at the Italian Grand Prix in Monza
It was the largest weekend attendance in the history of F1. And a rare wheel gun problem in the pits for Verstappen, treated them to a tense chase as the Dutch double world champion hunted down race leader Lewis Hamilton. There were brief moments in that chase when it appeared that the Englishman had the gap to Verstappen covered, but the straight-line speed of the RB18 ultimately denied a first win of the season for Mercedes and Hamilton. “He came from so far back on the straight, I think they are like 10kph faster than us on the straights. And at the end of the straight, our mirrors are vibrating so much that I couldn’t see where he was so it was difficult to defend” — reflected the seven-time world champion.
It was, however, one of Hamilton’s finest drives all year. His second-place finish was his 189th career podium and 17th points finish for the season! As for Verstappen, 391 of Red Bull’s 656 Constructor’s points belong to him. He’s been in a league of his own ever since Ferrari’s challenge fell apart early on. He now jointly holds the record for most wins in a season along with Michael Schumacher and Sebastian Vettel.
Also read: Max Verstappen overcame Mercedes’ bold challenge to win his home race
Vettel was voted Driver Of The Day by fans online for his thrilling run to the finish line just pipping the HAAS of Kevin Magnussen for P7. Sergio Perez in the second Red Bull finished a quiet P4 after a coming together with Valtteri Bottas in the opening lap saw him lose a front wing endplate. It’s his home race in Mexico City up next, this weekend.
Now that both championships have been sealed, will the Mexican go flat out for some home glory? Can he take on Verstappen in a wheel-to-wheel dice in what is the fastest car this year? There won’t be team orders from Red Bull for sure and it would close the season on a high for the champions if they finish 1-2. Over to Autódromo Hermanos Rodríguez then, for a mano o mano bullfight!