In three weeks in Abu Dhabi, we will know the name of the great winner of the F1 World Championship, a competition that had not thrilled us so much for a while. This track drama never ceases to keep us going, as, weekend after weekend, Lewis Hamilton (36) and Max Verstappen (24) engage in a terribly bitter duel.
Outpaced by 14 points by the Dutch at the start on the Arabian Peninsula, the Briton is definitely back to business. The Mercedes driver, who had confirmed his regain of form by signing an impressive pole on Saturday, concluded this decisive weekend by offering himself the Grand Prix of Qatar, on Sunday, in front of the prodigy Red Bull and Fernando Alonso (Alpine), l ‘Spanish author of his 98th career podium. At the best of times, Hamilton returned to 8 points behind his best enemy, leader without margins of the Drivers’ World Championship. And this two Grands Prix before the end of the season.
Penalized before the start, Verstappen quickly got back into the game
Pushed back to seventh place, an hour and a half before the start, sanctioned with five penalty places on the grid for failing to respect two yellow flags during qualifying, the Batavian (at) the wheel had caught up again in the fifth lap. And offered to the followers of this bitter duel a new breathtaking episode, flanked in the rearview mirror of Hamilton. “Our position on the grid compromised the situation but I got off to a very good start, we quickly came back to second position and in the end, it’s very good to have this fastest lap”, reacted Verstappen, who snatched a crucial point in view of the world title thanks to the fastest lap in the race, at the microphone of Canal +.
Despite his efforts and no guilty error, he was held in respect by the seven-time world champion on the Lusail circuit, who in the process validates his 102nd career success. “I was a bit lonely at the front of the race but I like it when everything goes well,” said the winner once he got out of his car. The team worked very well. I can’t wait to see the replay of the race, I don’t know why there were so many punctures behind. I am very happy to come back to eight points. I can’t wait to be on the last two races. “
For Verstappen, it will be necessary to fight again to hope to offer his very first title of champion, a crown which is not yet ready to give up his elder of 12 years, focus on his target: an eighth world title of the pilots, a record . To our great pleasure, the war will therefore continue between the two ogres of the circuit who, together, have won 16 of the first 21 Grand Prix of the season by monopolizing the first two places on 12 occasions. Next and penultimate act of this Homeric clash, on December 5 during the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix. We are already looking forward to it.