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Adverse weather conditions tried to challenge the supremacy of Max Verstappen and Red Bull but failed. On home turf, the Dutch driver added another triumph to his incredible streak of nine consecutive victories, bringing his total to eleven wins out of thirteen races held so far this season. Meanwhile, Red Bull continues to dominate uncontested, winning all thirteen races conducted up to this point.

The race started on a dry track, but rain made an appearance after a few laps, forcing teams to switch to wet tires. Ten laps from the end, a torrential downpour hit Zandvoort, leading race control to halt the race with a red flag. After a brief delay, the race resumed behind the safety car, with drivers on intermediate tires.

It seemed like all the ingredients were present for a different outcome, but Verstappen demonstrated the concentration and composure required to stay ahead. After the first pit stop, where Sergio Perez briefly gained an advantage by pitting before Verstappen, the Dutch driver quickly closed the 13-second gap and, as the track began to dry, executed a strategic overtake, re-entering the pits ahead of Perez to switch to slick tires. This move allowed him to reclaim the lead, while other drivers battled for second place.

Perez held onto second place but couldn't threaten Verstappen. Instead, it was Fernando Alonso who amazed with an exceptional performance. When rain began to fall again ten laps from the end, Perez made a mistake that cost him positions, dropping three spots at turn 1. The red flag later saved Perez, but a 5-second penalty for speeding in the pit lane made it impossible for him to reach the podium. Perez's crisis appears to be deepening.

Alonso appeared on the podium, securing second place with his Aston Martin-Mercedes. He gained second place through a masterful double overtake right after the start and demonstrated great form. However, his teammate Lance Stroll remained out of the points, highlighting the performance gap between the two Aston Martin drivers.

Perez's penalty allowed Pierre Gasly, driving for Alpine-Renault, to claim the third step on the podium. Gasly had started only twelfth on the grid but utilized a bold strategy by pitting when the rain began. He then maintained a strong pace, battling Carlos Sainz for an extended period. This marked Gasly's first podium of the season and the second for Alpine-Renault after Esteban Ocon's third-place finish in Monaco.

Sainz had a smart race, showing that he had overcome his early mistake at Spa. He secured an excellent fifth place for Ferrari, despite the Italian team not being competitive at Zandvoort. On the other hand, Charles Leclerc had a challenging weekend, with errors in practice and qualifying, along with contact on the first lap of the Grand Prix with Oscar Piastri, damaging his front wing. His series of mistakes is becoming concerning.

Lewis Hamilton staged a comeback after a disappointing qualifying session, climbing to sixth place. However, his performance could have been better if he had started further up the grid. George Russell had an unfortunate day, staying out on slick tires for too long and suffering a puncture in a battle with Lando Norris. Norris finished seventh, disappointed considering he had started on the front row.

Alexander Albon adopted a bold strategy, staying out on slick tires for most of the race while it rained. Despite avoiding mistakes, his eighth-place finish didn't meet his expectations, given that he had started fourth. The other three drivers who started behind Verstappen in qualifying were penalized by their team's strategic choices.

Yuki Tsunoda of AlphaTauri made a wrong strategy call, while Liam Lawson made an impressive debut in the toughest conditions, finishing thirteenth without making errors. Guan Yu Zhou had a rough finish against the barriers towards the end of the race, while Valtteri Bottas of Sauber was not competitive. The situation at Aston Martin between Alonso and Stroll continues to be embarrassing, with Alonso gaining a significant points advantage over his teammate.

Overall, the Zandvoort race was characterized by a series of surprises and twists due to changing weather conditions and different team strategies. However, Red Bull and Verstappen remained unstoppable, confirming their dominance this season.

© Cavalieri Garage & Co.


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