Hamilton beats Verstappen to win Portuguese GP

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Sunday's win took Mercedes' Lewis Hamilton to 66 points, eight ahead of Red Bull's Max Verstappen who is expected to be his main challenger this season. /VCG
Sunday’s win took Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton to 66 points, eight ahead of Red Bull’s Max Verstappen who is expected to be his main challenger this season. /VCG

Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton produced a brilliant drive on Sunday to win the Portuguese Grand Prix ahead of Red Bull’s Max Verstappen as Valtteri Bottas, who started in pole position, settled for third.

The seven-time world champion crossed the finish line 29.148 seconds ahead of Verstappen, who opted for a late extra pit stop for fresh in chase of an extra point for the fastest lap.

Hamilton found himself dropped into third a short while into the race after a Safety Car was deployed following Kimi Raikkonen’s crash into his Alfa Romeo team mate Antonio Giovinazzi.

Verstappen, who started third, took advantage of the restart to overtake Hamilton into second-place.

The Briton however responded brilliantly with a smart overtake four laps later before claiming the lead as he passed Bottas into Turn 1 on Lap 20 of 66.

The win took Hamilton to 66 points, eight ahead of Verstappen who is expected to be his main challenger this season.

Verstappen’s compatriot Serio Perez finished fourth, his best result in the Red Bull. The Mexican was followed past the finish line by McLaren’s Lando Norris, who has now finished in the top five at every race this season so far.

Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc finished in sixth place, while the Alpine pairing of Esteban Ocon and Fernando Alonso rounded off a fine team performance with P7 and P8.

Norris’ compatriot Daniel Ricciardo managed to finish in P9, with AlphaTauri’s Pierre Gasly taking 10th.

The drivers have a few days to prepare for more action at the Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya which will host the Spanish Grand Prix next weekend.

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