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Latest F1 news: Verstappen Austrian hattrick, Hamilton falls behind

Latest F1 news: Verstappen Austrian hattrick, Hamilton falls behind - News

More interesting movements have been abound in Formula 1 during the last week. But fear not, as TrackDays is primed to bring you up to speed with our latest roundup of all the action from the track…

  • Three in a row for Verstappen

Chalk that up as three consecutive Grand Prixs and three consecutive wins on the trot for Max Verstappen. It would appear that the Team Red Bull racer has, after a bit of a shaky start to the season, now emerged as the one to beat, notching up his fifth victory overall for 2021 at the Austrian Grand Prix on Sunday.

With a final race time of 1:23:54 - a whole 17 seconds quicker than second place Valteri Bottas racing for Team Mercedes, his overall points for the current season standings now extends the gap even further by 32 points to place him firmly at the top of the leaderboard for the overall Championship title at this stage.

It was certainly an eventful race - most of all on the final lap, when Kimi Raikkonen, racing for Team Alfa Romeo, drove into Sebastian Vettel racing for Team Aston Martin whilst George Russell was toiling to achieve a 10th place finish for Team Williams.

None of them made the grade in the end, with Russell finishing 11th, Raikkonen in 15th and Vettel in a disappointing 17th. More will be expected of all at Silverstone for this year's British Grand Prix in just under two weeks' time.

  • Has Lewis Hamilton lost it?

We've got this far without mentioning current reigning F1 champ Lewis Hamilton, but the fact of the matter is that he simply hasn't been the big story for the last few races, which has led to a furious amount of action in the debating chamber as to whether or not his record breaking run achieved last year is indeed grinding to a halt.

One common school of thought around Hamilton's most recent performances (4th at the Austria GP, second at the French and Styrian GPs and a dismal 15th at Monaco) is that he's simply been shown up by a better driver regardless of the car, evidenced in the fact that his erstwhile rival Verstappen has not just overtaken him by a few points in the season-to-date standings but by many.

Hamilton himself has acknowledged that Team Mercedes are currently "miles away from Red Bull … Max is walking away with it right now and there is not really much we can do about it." Of course, maintaining the record defying success that Hamilton achieved was always going to be unsustainable to a point, but his defeatism even at this stage of the Championship seems to be confirming what Verstappen himself won't admit.

  • Clarkson tells F1 stewards to 'resign' in explosive rant

Some other developments of this season so far seem to be rubbing ex-Top Gear host Jeremy Clarkson up the wrong way. Team McLaren's Lando Norris found things especially hard going at Austria on Sunday, when he was hit with a five second penalty, resulting in him finishing third.

It thus led to Clarkson, who now hosts The Grand Tour for Amazon Prime, to launch a tirade on his Twitter account at F1 stewards, for Norris' deduction over an alleged force off the track for Team Red Bull's Sergio Perez, saying, "F1 stewards. You are ruining the sport. Please, just resign. Go home."

Now of course, this isn't the first time that stewards have felt the heat of fans and F1 team bosses this season over somewhat harsh judgement calls; back at the start of this season in Bahrain, there was a dispute over the ruling made on track rules regarding wheel-to-wheel racing.

This time, even Perez's Team Red Bull boss Christian Horner seemed to concur (albeit more diplomatically) with Clarkson. Speaking to Sky Sports, he said "I said in the commentary that I didn't have a major problem with the Lando move. It was racing; it was hard racing, it was wheel-to-wheel, so then to get a penalty for that … But that's racing, otherwise you're going to get drivers just chucking themselves off the circuit and claiming penalties, so it's a bit disappointing."

Make sure you keep visiting our News page here on the TrackDays website to get all the very latest updates on the current Formula 1 season. To book your next Formula 1 Single Seater driving experience via available dates or purchase of our open gift vouchers, visit our dedicated Formula 1 Experiences page today.

Image Credit: Twitter

05 July 2021
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