Max Verstappen clinched a historic 14th race win in a single F1 season with a dominant victory at 2022 Mexico City Grand Prix.
Verstappen dominated from lights out and only relinquished the lead during the pit stop phase as he cruised to a historic 14th race win in a single season, which wasn’t the only record broke as he also claimed the record for most points in a single campaign with two races remaining in 2022.
Lewis Hamilton finished second following a first-lap overtake on George Russell who ultimately finished fourth behind Sergio Perez with a bonus point for fastest lap, as the Mexican finished third at his home race.
Carlos Sainz, Charles Leclerc, Daniel Ricciardo, Esteban Ocon, Lando Norris and Valtteri Bottas rounded out the top ten.
In the drivers’ standings, Verstappen by virtue of victory broke Hamilton’s all-time record of most points in a single campaign, as he moved onto 416 points with two races left of the season.
Perez meanwhile regained second in the standings ahead of Leclerc by five points as they tussle over the vice-champion honour, whilst Russell isn’t entirely out of contention in fourth as Hamilton leapfrogged Sainz for sixth despite their hopes being ended in Mexico.
At lights out, Verstappen who opted to start on soft tyres managed to fend off the threat of Russell and Hamilton on the medium tyres, as Russell conceded second to his teammate after he ran wide out of Turn 2 with Perez – also on soft tyres – immediately following through.
Leclerc meanwhile instantly cleared Bottas for sixth at the start to sit behind Sainz but ahead of Alonso, Bottas, Ocon and Norris, as everyone quickly settled into tyre management mode.
Up front, Hamilton managed to stay within two seconds of Verstappen until Lap 17 when he began to drift away from the reigning champion, who opted to pit at end of Lap 25 for mediums with Hamilton following suit at end of Lap 29 as he pitted for hard tyres.
Russell consequently inherited the lead but pitted for hard tyres at end of Lap 34 which unleashed Verstappen back into the lead ahead of Hamilton with a seven-second gap, as the Dutchman proceeded to cruise to an historic 14th victory in a single season.
Perez meanwhile tried to hunt down Hamilton for second as the Brit struggled for pace on hard tyres unlike the Mexican on medium tyres, but struggled to mount much threat and eventually settled for third ahead of Russell in fourth as Sainz and Leclerc quietly drove to fifth and sixth respectively.
Elsewhere in an otherwise quiet race, Pierre Gasly received a five-second time penalty for forcing Lance Stroll wide at Turn 4 on Lap 13 as they scrapped over 15th position, which he dutily served in his first pit stop.
Ricciardo was slapped with a 10s time penalty on Lap 54 after he caused a collision with AlphaTauri’s Yuki Tsunoda on Lap 51 at Turn 6, as they scrapped over 11th position at Turn 6 which ultimately ended Tsunoda’s race with suspension damage on front-right tyre.
Fernando Alonso was the only other retiree after his Alpine suffered a power unit failure on Lap 65 at Turn 1, which caused a brief Virtual Safety Car.
His penalty however didn’t limit Ricciardo too much as the Aussie on soft tyres steadily carved his way to a seventh-placed finish on the road, which eventually became seventh in the classification once his time penalty was applied.
F1 now takes a fortnight break ahead of the penulatimate round of season in Brazil from 11-13 November, where Perez could secure second if results go his way, which would wrap up an one-two championship finish for both Red Bull drivers.
|1||Max Verstappen||Red Bull||71||1h 38m 36.729|
|2||Lewis Hamilton||Mercedes||71||+ 15.186|
|3||Sergio Perez||Red Bull||71||+ 18.097|
|4||George Russell||Mercedes||71||+ 49.431|
|5||Carlos Sainz||Ferrari||71||+ 58.123|
|6||Charles Leclerc||Ferrari||71||+ 68.774|
|7||Daniel Ricciardo||McLaren||70||+ 1 Lap|
|8||Esteban Ocon||Alpine||70||+ 1 Lap|
|9||Lando Norris||McLaren||70||+ 1 Lap|
|10||Valtteri Bottas||Alfa Romeo||70||+ 1 Lap|
|11||Pierre Gasly||AlphaTauri||70||+ 1 Lap|
|12||Alex Albon||Williams||70||+ 1 Lap|
|13||Guanyu Zhou||Alfa Romeo||70||+ 1 Lap|
|14||Sebastian Vettel||Aston Martin||70||+ 1 Lap|
|15||Lance Stroll||Aston Martin||70||+ 1 Lap|
|16||Mick Schumacher||Haas||70||+ 1 Lap|
|17||Kevin Magnussen||Haas||70||+ 1 Lap|
|18||Nicholas Latifi||Williams||69||+ 2 Laps|