F1 news - Valtteri Bottas wins in Turkey as Max Verstappen takes title lead from unhappy Lewis Hamilton
It was a fascinating, if at times confusing, race as teams struggled to figure out the conditions and waited a while before eventually pitting, if they pitted at all. In the end it was a great for Valtteri Bottas as he took another win before leaving Mercedes. It was also great for Red Bull as Max Verstappen took second and the title lead whilst Sergio Perez completed the podium.
Winner Mercedes' Finnish driver Valtteri Bottas celebrates after the Formula One Grand Prix of Turkey at the Intercity Istanbul Park in Istanbul on October 10, 2021. (Photo by UMIT BEKTAS / POOL / AFP) (Photo by UMIT BEKTAS/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)
Bottas and Verstappen both pitted with one third of the race remaining, but Charles Leclerc, who led for a period, gambled on going the distance one one set of intermediate tyres. The decision backfired, though, as Bottas passed Leclerc with 10 laps to go.
Mercedes subsequently made the surprise call to pit Hamilton for the final eight laps, dropping the world champion down to firth place as Verstappen crossed the line in second to open up a six-point gap in the championship.
DRIVER OF THE DAY - Valtteri Bottas (Mercedes)
Christian Horner might well argue that Perez was the driver of the day given the job he did keeping Hamilton away from attacking Verstappen, but Bottas deserves recognition for the way he converted pole position into a race victory. The Finn showed good composure to respond to the challenge Leclerc gave him and reminded us all of his quality even as he continues his farewell tour at Mercedes.
ISTANBUL, TURKEY - OCTOBER 10: Race winner Valtteri Bottas of Finland and Mercedes GP celebrates in parc ferme during the F1 Grand Prix of Turkey at Intercity Istanbul Park on October 10, 2021 in Istanbul, Turkey. (Photo by Dan Istitene - Formula 1/Formul
Image credit: Getty Images
WHERE THE RACE WAS WON
1/58 - LIGHTS OUT! Alonso spins around turn one! There looked to be contact between Alonso and Norris and the Alpine has spun! Alonso looks to have lost a number of places! Indeed, he's now done in P15! Bottas got away cleanly.
15/58 - Hamilton now up to P6! It's almost as if Hamilton is gaining a place with every single lap. Tsunoda was the cork in the bottle with Hamilton making it past Stroll and Norris in quick succession.
35/58 - Incredible racing! Hamilton and Perez go wheel-to-wheel around FOUR corners in the fight for P4! Hamilton looked to have the place down the pit straight, but Perez comes back and keeps it! That was great entertainment!
47/58 - Bottas gets past Leclerc! The Ferrari just didn't have the grip to keep Bottas behind him and the Finn regains the lead! He made his move into turn one and Mercedes might now be set for the win.
51/58 - Big call from Mercedes! Hamilton has been pulled into the pits with eight laps remaining. Have Mercedes seen something in the radar? He rejoins the race in P5. Let's see how this one plays out!
ISTANBUL, TURKEY - OCTOBER 10: Lewis Hamilton of Great Britain and Mercedes GP looks on in parc ferme during the F1 Grand Prix of Turkey at Intercity Istanbul Park on October 10, 2021 in Istanbul, Turkey. (Photo by Dan Mullan/Getty Images)
Image credit: Getty Images
52/58 - Perez gets past Leclerc! That was very strong racing from Perez who holds his nerve around two corners to take third place from Leclerc! The Mexican had much better grip and that proved to be the difference!
Bottas wins the Turkish GP! The Finn takes the chequered flag ahead of Verstappen in second and Perez in third place! Leclerc takes fourth and Hamilton crosses the line in P5!
BEST OVERTAKE OF THE DAY
The best overtake of the day wasn’t really an overtake at all, but the wheel-to-wheel contest between Hamilton and Perez around FOUR consecutive corners was the purest racing action of the day. In the end, Perez maintained track position, but not before he’d been pushed to his limits and even pushed into the pit lane.
BEST PIT EXCHANGE OF THE DAY
"**** man, why'd you give up third place?!" Hamilton complained to his race engineer, Peter Bonnington, after the peculiar decision to put the world champion with eight laps remaining. He wasn’t slow to voice his disgruntlement.