Verstappen wins French Grand Prix to extend lead over Hamilton

Le Castellet: Formula One championship leader Max Verstappen on Sunday overtook Lewis Hamilton on the penultimate lap to win the French Grand Prix and extend his lead over his title rival to 12 points.

Verstappen used the DRS system to catch Hamilton on lap 52 and pass him on the inside before zooming off to clinch his third win of the season and 13th of his career. A bonus point for the fastest lap made it a great day for Red Bull, which had never beaten Mercedes on the Paul Ricard circuit in southern France.

Dutch driver Max Verstappen after winning the French Grand Prix for Red Bull at Circuit Paul Ricard on Sunday.Credit:Getty Images

Verstappen now has 131 points to Hamilton’s 119 after seven races.

Red Bull’s Sergio Perez sneaked past a dejected Valtteri Bottas to take third place and strengthen Red Bull’s lead in the constructors’ championship.

Verstappen took an impressive pole position ahead of Hamilton and his teammate Bottas.

Verstappen got away cleanly, but then made a basic error cutting the kerb on the first turn to gift Hamilton the lead.

He made up for it in the dying minutes and will head to the Austrian GP – on Red Bull’s home track – confident of another solid performance.

AP

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