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Verstappen duels the McLaren duo to take victory in F1 Austrian Sprint race

Written by Owen Bradley


Max Verstappen duelled the McLaren duo of Oscar Piastri and Lando Norris to take victory in the Austrian Sprint Race, beating the pair by around five seconds.

Credit: Red Bull Content Pool

Verstappen cleared the field at the beginning of the race, making a clean getaway as the McLaren drivers battled one another for track position. Into Turn 4, the McLaren's were side-by-side as Norris kept the track position, with Piastri sent the long way around the outside of his teammate.


Just behind the leading trio, Carlos Sainz would drive his Ferrari around the outside of George Russell at the downhill Turn 4, with Charles Leclerc managing to overtake Sergio Perez with a switchback manoeuvre at Turn 4, running to the long left-hander of Turn 6, using the grip to drive around the Mexican driver and take 7th place.


A few laps of continuous running in the DRS, and eventually Lando Norris would manage to gain a run on Verstappen into Turn 4 on Lap 4. Unable to quite make a move on the outside line, Norris would sit behind the Red Bull, awaiting the DRS zones on the next lap to make his move.


Just a lap later, Norris would come from a long way back and dive to the inside of Turn 3, taking the lead of the race. Norris would have DRS assistance on the run into Turn 4 as well, as he made the move on Verstappen after the DRS detection line.


However, despite not having DRS help, Verstappen would run right behind the rear diffuser of the McLaren, diving to the inside at Turn 4 and reclaiming his position. This battle allowed for Oscar Piastri to draw alongside his teammate heading into Turn 6, flying around the outside of Norris and taking second place.


Elsewhere, Sainz's Ferrari lacked the pace to stay within DRS range of the McLaren's in front, with the Mercedes' of Russell and Lewis Hamilton closing right up to the Spaniard. Eventually, Russell managed to gain momentum with the DRS heading into Turn 4, seizing fourth place as Hamilton looked to do a similar move on the Ferrari driver.


Further down the field, Nico Hulkenberg would make an optimistic lunge down the inside of Fernando Alonso into Turn 3, leaving Alonso to drive onto the run off area and lose another position. Hulkenberg would then be given a 10-second penalty for forcing another driver off the circuit, gaining two penalty points in the process as well.


With Piastri unable to quite match Verstappen's pace, it left a gap of a few seconds to the Dutchman, as Norris and Piastri began their own battle for the podium places.


Norris wouldn't quite be able to pick up enough of a run coming out of Turn 1 or at Turn 3 to make any meaningful potential moves, as Piastri claimed another Sprint podium, and managed to beat his teammate after a few rounds being beaten by Norris.


Max Verstappen would come home to win the Sprint race at the Red Bull Ring circuit, in front of an adoring crowd who see Verstappen as one of their own.


Formula One Grand Prix Qualifying starts at 15:00pm UK time.


F1 Austrian Sprint Race Results


1st Max Verstappen, Red Bull

2nd Oscar Piastri, McLaren

3rd Lando Norris, McLaren


4th George Russell, Mercedes

5th Carlos Sainz, Ferrari

6th Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes

7th Charles Leclerc, Ferrari

8th Sergio Perez, Red Bull

9th Kevin Magnussen, Haas

10th Lance Stroll, Aston Martin


11th Esteban Ocon, Alpine

12th Pierre Gasly, Alpine

13th Yuki Tsunoda, RB

14th Nico Hulkenberg, Haas

15th Daniel Ricciardo, RB

16th Fernando Alonso, Aston Martin

17th Logan Sargeant, Williams

18th Alex Albon, Williams

19th Valtteri Bottas, Sauber

20th Zhou Guanyu, Sauber

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