user icon
user icon

Verstappen wins in Mexico, Hamilton secures title despite Vettel clash

  • Published on 29 Oct 2017 21:43
  • comments 5
  • By: Sam Gale

Max Verstappen took a convincing race win in Mexico as Hamilton secured his fourth world title despite finishing a lap down after a first lap clash with Sebastian Vettel that put them both way down the order. Hamilton suffered a puncture with Vettel having to replace his front wing.

Both drivers battled back to the points with Vettel in fourth and Hamilton in ninth but it was not enough to change the outcome of what looked like a foregone conclusion at the beginning of the day but put in doubt after the first lap collision. Verstappen also maintained his peculiar record of winning every race after Daniil Kvyat has been dropped, taking his win tally to 3.

Hamilton's teammate Valtteri Bottas took his first podium position in three races, doing his job to backup his teammate in what was a lonely race for the Finn, unable to challenge Verstappen ahead and not under any threat from Kimi Raikkonen behind. Raikkonen made it a double Finnish podium who was untroubled after he jumped the Force India's and the Renault of Nico Hulkenberg by pitting under virtual safety car.

Esteban Ocon took his joint best finish of his career in fifth place, but could count himself unlucky after running in third before the pitstops and on another day may have been able to hang on to grab his first ever podium if the virtual safety car had not come out. The other Force India of Sergio Perez will also surely be disappointed to only finish seventh and again behind his teammate in his home race for the third season in a row.

Lance Stroll and Kevin Magnussen were both the big beneficiaries of the Virtual safety car with both having a slice of luck to help them both to sixth and eighth respectively and taking extremely valuable points on a weekend where that looked very difficult for both teams and will no doubt help both Haas and Williams in their respective constructors battles.

Fernando Alonso took a rare point for McLaren rounding out the top ten and will no doubt be extremely pleased with his battle with championship winner Lewis Hamilton over ninth in the dying laps of the races, putting up a valiant defence in his underpowered car before eventually succumbing to the now four time world champion.

The big winner at the start was clearly Max Verstappen, with the Dutchman bravely going around the outside of pole sitter Sebastian Vettel in the first corner. This move wrong footing the Ferrari driver putting him briefly behind Lewis Hamilton before the two championship rivals came together with both having to pit at the end of the first lap to for a new front wing and to repair a puncture respectively.

This left Valtteri Bottas in second position and Esteban Ocon up to a brilliant third place, and well positioned to perhaps take a maiden podium with only Raikkonen of the usual front runners within touching distance of his Force India, with the Finn back in sixth after a poor start.

Daniel Ricciardo would retire early on from the race, in what would begin a worrying trend of the Renault powered cars retiring from the race with four of the six Renault's having to retire from the race owing to the lack of cooling in the high altitude, with the only two cars to survive being the race winner and Pierre Gasly, who up until the race had only ran very briefly in FP2 because of persistent reliability issues.

Vettel was at the front of the two championship contenders and now had the task of trying to get at least into the top two positions from the back of the field to maintain his championship aspirations. This however looked a tall order with getting through the traffic with every car seemingly putting up a stern defence against the Ferrari.

Perez was the first to stop of the cars in the points after being hounded by Kimi Raikkonen for a number of laps, which triggered Hulkenberg and Ocon into stopping ahead. However Hulkenberg's car failed him again from what would have been a high scoring position making it a fourth retirement from five and putting him out of the fight.

Another Renault failure in Hartley's Toro Rosso saw the VSC thrown on lap 34, allowing anyone who hadn't pitted up to that point to gain a large advantage on the cars they were racing, with Raikkonen jumping both Force India's and Magnussen and Stroll firmly propelled into the battle for points, with the two championship contenders also taking the opportunity to run fresh rubber.

After the end of the Virtual Safety car Vettel was up to eighth and behind Magnussen, but a long way from the two front runners in Verstappen and Bottas. He would however valiantly go on to try his best to carve through the midfield runners in the hope that he could perhaps get up to second place if Hamilton, who had been struggling to get through the traffic, couldn't get up to the magic ninth place he would need if Vettel were to come second.

However even though Vettel used the latter part of the race to climb past the likes of Stroll and the two Force India's up to fourth place, there was no catching the two out front, and with Hamilton finally finding some pace in what looked to be a damaged Mercedes he was closing in on the ninth place he would need if Vettel were to come second.

A very late pass on old rival Fernando Alonso eventually gave Hamilton the ninth place he needed, and with Vettel now needing the win to prolong the championship battle, the fight was all but over with three laps to go. this left it all but a formality that Hamilton would cross the line to the win the championship with ninth place in Mexico, with Max Verstappen taking a third race win in his young career.

 

Sam Gale

 

MX Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez - 29 October 2017

Replies (5)

Login to reply
  • Really amazing.. Congrats Lewis!!

    • + 2
    • Oct 29 2017 - 22:01
  • A pity, Vettel really had some poor luck this season, but it cant be helped. I hope next year's championship goes all the way until the final races. Strong job from Stroll today, and the same goes for KMag. 4 Renault retirements in one race though...

    • + 0
    • Oct 29 2017 - 22:15
  • mbmwe36

    Posts: 533

    Enjoyable race.
    Loved Verstappen's comment that he was just cruisin'. I look more exhausted driving a couple of hours in my car during the summer than he did after the grand prix - unreal.
    Very nice job by Magnussen and Ocon too. They didn't make too much noise, but got the job done.
    That DJ gimmick went over like a fart in church, though.

    • + 0
    • Oct 29 2017 - 22:49
  • RogerF1

    Posts: 480

    Good racer, not my favourite character, think the halo will be a problem next season for his head to fit through. Max maturing attitude, hope his car brings the battle to Merc and Ferrari next season.

    • + 1
    • Oct 29 2017 - 23:56
  • Well deserved championship to Lewis. While I think that having Bottas helped (because he did not challenged him too much), Lewis actually seemed very consistent this year without the silly errors of previous years.

    That being said, what an awful race. First race incident robbing us a proper championship fight. Ricciardo engine giving up. No Force India battle. No Renault battle. Bottas doing absolutely nothing to bother Max. This is the most underwhelming possible way for championship to end.

    • + 0
    • Oct 30 2017 - 03:57

GB F1 70th Anniversary Grand Prix

Local time 

  • Friday weather-image

    Saturday weather-image

    Sunday weather-image

  • Free practice 1

    11:00 - 12:30

    Free practice 3

    11:00 - 12:00

    Race

    14:10 - 16:10

  • Free practice 2

    15:00 - 16:30

    Qualifying

    14:00 - 15:00

    Fastest lap

     

GB F1 70th Anniversary Grand Prix

Local time 

  • Fridayweather-image

  • Free practice 1

    11:00 - 12:30

    Free practice 2

    15:00 - 16:30

  • Saturdayweather-image

  • Free practice 3

    11:00 - 12:00

    Qualifying

    14:00 - 15:00

  • Sunday weather-image

  • Race

    14:10 - 16:10

    Fastest lap

    14:10 - 16:10

Related news

Test calendar

Circuit de Catalunya - Winter testing

Circuit de Catalunya - Winter testing

See full test schedule

Give your opinion!

Will Bottas challenge Hamilton for the world championship in 2020?

World Championship standings 2020

Show full world champion standings

Driver profile

  • Country Netherlands
  • Date of b. Sep 30 1997 (22)
  • Place of b. Hasselt (Belgie), Netherlands
  • Weight 70 kg
  • Length 1.80 m
Show full profile

Formula 1 Calendar - 2020

Date
Grand Prix
Circuit
-
Spain
-
Spain
3 - Jul 5
Austria
10 - Jul 12
Austria
17 - Jul 19
Hungary
31 - Aug 2
United Kingdom
7 - Aug 9
United Kingdom
14 - Aug 16
Spain
28 - Aug 30
Belgium
4 - Sep 6
Italy
11 - Sep 13
Italy
25 - Sep 27
Russian
9 - Oct 11
Germany
See full schedule

Formula 1 Calendar - 2020

Date
Grand Prix & Circuit
3 - Jul 5
Austria Red Bull Ring
10 - Jul 12
Austria Red Bull Ring
17 - Jul 19
Hungary Hungaroring
31 - Aug 2
United Kingdom Silverstone
7 - Aug 9
United Kingdom Silverstone
14 - Aug 16
28 - Aug 30
4 - Sep 6
Italy Monza
11 - Sep 13
Italy Mugello
25 - Sep 27
Russian Sochi Autodrom
9 - Oct 11
Germany Nurburgring
See full schedule
show sidebar