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Grand Prix race results: Hamilton beats Verstappen in Spain

Lewis Hamilton won the Spanish Grand Prix in Barcelona for Mercedes on Sunday, the fourth race of the 2021 Formula 1 World Championship season.

Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing RB16B, Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes W12, Valtteri Bottas, Mercedes W12, Daniel Ricciardo, McLaren MCL35M, Charles Leclerc, Ferrari SF21, and the rest of the field on the opening lap

Zak Mauger / Motorsport Images

Hamilton lost his lead at the start, when Red Bull’s Max Verstappen pulled a bold first-corner move on him. But Hamilton’s race strategy proved superior when he took an early second pitstop, and chased down Verstappen in the closing stages – easily passing him to take victory.

The second Mercedes of Valtteri Bottas was a distant third, his main moment in the race coming as he briefly held up Hamilton while his teammate was chasing down Verstappen.

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2021 Emilia Romagna Grand Prix race results

Cla Driver Laps Time Gap Interval Pits
1 United Kingdom Lewis Hamilton 66 -     2
2 Netherlands Max Verstappen 66 15.841 15.841 15.841 2
3 Finland Valtteri Bottas 66 26.610 26.610 10.769 2
4 Monaco Charles Leclerc 66 54.616 54.616 28.006 2
5 Mexico Sergio Perez 66 1'03.671 1'03.671 9.055 2
6 Australia Daniel Ricciardo 66 1'13.768 1'13.768 10.097 2
7 Spain Carlos Sainz Jr. 66 1'14.670 1'14.670 0.902 2
8 United Kingdom Lando Norris 65 1 lap     2
9 France Esteban Ocon 65 1 lap     1
10 France Pierre Gasly 65 1 lap     2
11 Canada Lance Stroll 65 1 lap     2
12 Finland Kimi Raikkonen 65 1 lap     1
13 Germany Sebastian Vettel 65 1 lap     2
14 United Kingdom George Russell 65 1 lap     2
15 Italy Antonio Giovinazzi 65 1 lap     2
16 Canada Nicholas Latifi 65 1 lap     3
17 Spain Fernando Alonso 65 1 lap     2
18 Germany Mick Schumacher 64 2 laps     2
19 Russian Federation Nikita Mazepin 64 2 laps     2
  Japan Yuki Tsunoda 6        

How the Spanish Grand Prix unfolded

From pole position Hamilton led the charge to Turn 1, where Verstappen dived down his inside and grabbed the lead, easing Lewis wide on the corner exit. Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc passed Bottas around the outside of Turn 3 for third, with Daniel Ricciardo (McLaren), Sergio Perez (Red Bull), Esteban Ocon (Alpine) and Carlos Sainz (Ferrari) next up.

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Verstappen quickly pulled out of DRS range to Hamilton, as Bottas toiled to find a way past Leclerc. The race was neutralized with a safety car on Lap 8 when the engine of Yuki Tsunoda’s AlphaTauri cut-out at Turn 10.

Hamilton was unable to get a run on Verstappen at the restart, while Lance Stroll moved his Aston Martin past Fernando Alonso’s Alpine at Turn 5 for tenth place.

Hamilton set fastest lap to get into DRS range of Verstappen at one-third distance, as the pitstop cycle approached. Bottas was the first of the top five to pit, with Verstappen stopping a lap later – as Hamilton, having got to within half a second of the leader, stayed out.

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Verstappen suffered a slow stop, with both left-side tyres being slow to emerge from the garage due to his late call, losing him 2s to Hamilton. However, Hamilton then lost time while lapping the Haas of Nikita Mazepin – which negated his virtual lead over Verstappen. Bottas’s early stop undercut Leclerc for third place.

Hamilton ran several laps longer on the soft tyres he started on, and although he rejoined well behind, his new mediums were four laps fresher. Hamilton slashed the gap to Verstappen and was right on his tail again just after half distance, and despite getting into his DRS range, wasn’t able to get close enough to make a move.

Mercedes opted to pit Hamilton again on Lap 43, which proved crucial to his win. Verstappen stayed out, holding a 23s lead at that point as Red Bull put its strategy on Hamilton not repeating his charge to victory in the 2019 Hungarian GP in similar circumstances.

During Hamilton's chase, Bottas held up him for half a lap, losing him valuable laptime to Verstappen, and Bottas then pitted anyway for soft tyres. That meant he had to repass Leclerc with eight laps remaining.

With ten laps to go, Hamilton got the gap down to Verstappen under 7s, and was lapping almost 2s per lap faster. Hamilton got into DRS range on Lap 59 and passed him at the first attempt at Turn 1 a lap later.

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Verstappen then pitted for fresh softs in a successful bid to take fastest lap – albeit 22s behind Hamilton at that point. Verstappen finished 15s in arrears, with Bottas 10s further back and Leclerc in fourth.

Perez pulled a superb around-the-outside move on Ricciardo at Turn 1 to take fifth. Later on, Ricciardo and Sainz both passed Ocon in the final stint to claim sixth and seventh respectively. Norris also passed the fading Ocon for eighth.

The battle for the final point was intense, as Stroll and Alonso clashed at Turn 1 – with Stroll finally making a move stick there with four laps to go. AlphaTauri’s Pierre Gasly then passed Stroll to snatch the point, this despite a 5s penalty for lining up ahead of his grid spot.

2021 Formula 1 Emilia Romagna Grand Prix fastest laps

Cla Driver Laps Time Gap Interval km/h
1 Netherlands Max Verstappen 62 1'18.149     214.436
2 Finland Valtteri Bottas 65 1'19.430 1.281 1.281 210.978
3 Mexico Sergio Perez 60 1'19.483 1.334 0.053 210.837
4 Monaco Charles Leclerc 64 1'20.459 2.310 0.976 208.279
5 United Kingdom Lewis Hamilton 54 1'20.665 2.516 0.206 207.748
6 Spain Fernando Alonso 63 1'21.182 3.033 0.517 206.425
7 United Kingdom Lando Norris 56 1'21.279 3.130 0.097 206.178
8 France Pierre Gasly 64 1'21.375 3.226 0.096 205.935
9 Spain Carlos Sainz Jr. 53 1'21.568 3.419 0.193 205.448
10 Australia Daniel Ricciardo 60 1'21.853 3.704 0.285 204.732
11 Canada Lance Stroll 47 1'22.607 4.458 0.754 202.864
12 Germany Mick Schumacher 54 1'22.637 4.488 0.030 202.790
13 Italy Antonio Giovinazzi 42 1'22.802 4.653 0.165 202.386
14 Germany Sebastian Vettel 56 1'22.820 4.671 0.018 202.342
15 Finland Kimi Raikkonen 54 1'22.868 4.719 0.048 202.225
16 Canada Nicholas Latifi 57 1'22.905 4.756 0.037 202.134
17 United Kingdom George Russell 30 1'23.208 5.059 0.303 201.398
18 France Esteban Ocon 46 1'23.311 5.162 0.103 201.149
19 Russian Federation Nikita Mazepin 45 1'24.040 5.891 0.729 199.405
20 Japan Yuki Tsunoda 5 1'24.825 6.676 0.785 197.559

2021 Formula 1 Emilia Romagna Grand Prix tyre history

Cla Driver 1 2 3 4
1 United Kingdom Lewis Hamilton S 32 M 14 M 30    
2 Netherlands Max Verstappen S 27 M 36 S 6    
3 Finland Valtteri Bottas S 26 M 30 S 16    
4 Monaco Charles Leclerc S 31 M 30 S 11    
5 Mexico Sergio Perez S 30 M 30 S 12    
6 Australia Daniel Ricciardo S 28 M 21 S 21    
7 Spain Carlos Sainz Jr. S 25 M 24 S 23    
8 United Kingdom Lando Norris S 26 M 28 S 17    
9 France Esteban Ocon S 26 M 42        
10 France Pierre Gasly S 18 M 29 S 18    
11 Canada Lance Stroll S 22 M 17 S 29    
12 Finland Kimi Raikkonen M 37 S 28        
13 Germany Sebastian Vettel S 21 M 17 S 30    
14 United Kingdom George Russell S 9 M 19 M 37    
15 Italy Antonio Giovinazzi S 8 M 34 S 29    
16 Canada Nicholas Latifi S 9 M 18 M 23 S 18
17 Spain Fernando Alonso S 24 M 40 S 7    
18 Germany Mick Schumacher S 23 M 27 M 14    
19 Russian Federation Nikita Mazepin S 22 M 20 M 22    
  Japan Yuki Tsunoda S 6            

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