Max Verstappen has broken the record for most race wins in a season after securing his 14th victory of 2022.
The two-time champion rarely looked under pressure at the front of the field as he took the win at the Mexican Grand Prix ahead of Lewis Hamilton, with teammate Sergio Perez completing the podium at his home race.
Verstappen covered George Russell off the startline, leaving him going wheel to wheel with his teammate around the opening corners, missing out to Hamilton, and Russell slipped further back when Perez powered down the straight, much to the delight of the home fans.
Further down the order, Pierre Gasly and Lance Stroll battled as both tried to make amends after disappointing qualifying performances, with the Frenchman forcing the Aston Martin wide, leaving him with a five-second time penalty.
Perez was the first of the front runners to stop, but the Red Bull crew had issues getting the left rear tyre off, costing him an extra couple of seconds.
Verstappen came in soon after while Mercedes left their drivers out longer at the front, with Russell stating his tyres were good enough to extend his stint. Red Bull left open the possibility of a two-stop strategy, while Mercedes switched Hamilton onto hards, committing to a one-stop.
Russell urged the team to leave him out as long as possible and change him onto soft tyres towards the end of the race, but his pace wasn’t strong enough, and he came in for new tyres midway through the race, dropping him back down to fourth, but leaving him on newer tyres than those ahead of him.
With less than 20 laps remaining, Yuki Tsunoda became the first retirement from the race when he came under pressure from Daniel Ricciardo. The McLaren driver tried to claim the inside line, but the two cars came together, leaving the AlphaTauri shedding carbon fibre before coming into the pits to retire. Ricciardo received a 10-second time penalty for causing the collision.
Trying to ensure he stayed in the points after picking up his penalty, Ricciardo went on a charge, passing his teammate and both Alpines to move up to seventh on the road, and with clear track ahead of him he had enough time to open up a gap of more than 10 seconds over Esteban Ocon.
Fernando Alonso’s day finished early when his Alpine suffered an engine failure less than 10 laps to the end of the race, resulting in a brief virtual safety car. Russell urged the team to pit him during the VSC, but Mercedes left him out, only to bring him in on the penultimate lap of the race looking for the fastest lap.
Russell took the bonus point for fastest lap on the final lap of the race, but he didn’t have enough time to close the gap to Perez in third.
1 Max Verstappen (Red Bull)
2. Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes)
3. Sergio Perez (Red Bull)
4. George Russell (Mercedes)
5. Carlos Sainz (Ferrari)
6. Charles Leclerc (Ferrari)
7. Daniel Ricciardo (McLaren)
8. Esteban Ocon (Alpine)
9. Lando Norris (McLaren)
10. Valtteri Bottas (Alfa Romeo)
11. Pierre Gasly (AlphaTauri)
12. Alex Albon (Williams)
13. Guanyu Zhou (Alfa Romeo)
14. Sebastian Vettel (Aston Martin)
15. Lance Stroll (Aston Martin)
16. Mick Schumacher (Haas)
17. Kevin Magnussen (Haas)
18. Nicholas Latifi (Williams)
Fernando Alonso (Alpine)
Yuki Tsunoda (AlphaTauri)
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