2022 Formula 1 Spanish Grand Prix highlights

Introduction

 

Max Verstappen won an action-packed 2022 Formula 1 Spanish Grand Prix as pole-sitter Charles Leclerc retired from a comfortable lead. Sergio Perez took second place to secure Red Bull’s second one-two of the season, as George Russell finished third for Mercedes, having been involved in an epic bout with eventual winner Verstappen.

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Soaring temperatures weren’t the only problem on Sunday; huge gusts into Turn 4 caused both Carlos Sainz and Verstappen to go off track and drop down the order early on. That left Leclerc with a comfortable lead and a free pit stop by Lap 22, and it seemed a straightforward victory for Ferrari – until Leclerc’s engine gave way on Lap 27.

Before that, Russell and Verstappen (whose DRS was malfunctioning) had sparred – going wheel-to-wheel on numerous breath-taking occasions – for P2. Now they were battling for the lead. So Verstappen pitted a second time from mediums back to softs on Lap 29 and caught up to Russell’s tail by Lap 37 when Russell swapped for another set of mediums. Sergio Perez was briefly in the lead now – but pitted soon after for a new set of mediums.

Covering off Perez’s alternate strategy and tyre life advantage, Verstappen too was pitted for softs on Lap 45, a new set of mediums now giving him a prime opportunity at prying the leadoff Perez. Verstappen was allowed past and eventually won by 13 seconds; Perez took P2 and fastest lap having stopped for softs late on.

Russell finished third despite having fended off Verstappen’s threats for much of the race, while Sainz finished fourth despite having dropped outside the top 10 early on after his Turn 4 spin. Hamilton passed Sainz for P4 with a brilliant move at Turn 1 with five laps left but then dropped to P5 having been told to lift off by his Mercedes team.

Valtteri Bottas’s soft-medium-medium strategy saw him lose out to soft-tyred finishers Sainz and Hamilton, the Finn taking a still-solid P6 finish for Alfa Romeo. In seventh was Esteban Ocon, up to five places for Alpine with two soft-tyred stints. Lando Norris mirrored the Frenchman’s strategy but finished a few seconds behind in P8 from P11 for McLaren. Alpine’s Fernando Alonso (from the back of the grid) and AlphaTauri’s Yuki Tsunoda (from P13) rounded out the top 10 on the same soft-medium-soft-soft gambit.

Sebastian Vettel’s two-stop strategy saw him finish 11th for Aston Martin, 14th-placed Mick Schumacher facing a similar fate as he dropped out of the points late on for Haas with Daniel Ricciardo and Pierre Gasly promoted to P12 and P13 respectively.

Late contact with Gasly at Turns 1-2 put Lance Stroll 15th for Aston Martin.

Kevin Magnussen made contact with Hamilton early on at Turn 4 and ended up 17th – between the Williams drivers – having opted for a soft-medium-hard strategy. At Williams, Alex Albon finished 18th and Nicholas Latifi 16th.

Along with Leclerc, Alfa Romeo’s Zhou Guanyu was the other retiree in Spain.

Mario Isola – Head of F1 and car racing at Pirelli commented:

This was certainly one of the biggest tests that our new 18-inch tyres have faced all year, thanks to a high-energy circuit with big degradation expected and track temperatures that exceeded 50 degrees centigrade. We can say now that they coped with the challenge very well, and what makes their performance even more impressive is that the drivers concentrated on just the softer tyres nominated here. In particular, the soft tyre was a revelation, with nearly all the drivers choosing it for the start and many of them running the soft for the bulk of the race.

There was a wide variety of strategies seen throughout the field, with drivers willing to push the limits and target three stops, adding to the spectacle of an extremely hard-fought race: also because these cars make it easier to overtake. Congratulations to Red Bull for a decisive one-two; now we move on to a very different challenge in Monaco next weekend.

2022 Formula 1 Spanish GP Race Results

Pos No Driver Country Team Time Points Overall
1. 1 Max Verstappen Netherlands Red Bull Racing 1:37:20.475 25 99
2. 11 Sergio Perez Mexico Red Bull Racing Honda +13.072s 19 79
3. 63 George Russell Great Britain Mercedes-AMG Petronas +32.927s 15 74
4. 55 Carlos Sainz Spain Scuderia Ferrari +45.208s 12 60
5. 44 Lewis Hamilton Great Britain Mercedes-AMG Petronas +54.534s 10 46
6. 77 Valtteri Bottas Finland Alfa Romeo F1 Team +59.976s 8 36
7. 31 Esteban Ocon France Alpine F1 Team +75.397s 6 30
8. 4 Lando Norris Great Britain Mclaren Racing +83.235s 4 35
9. 14 Fernando Alonso Spain Alpine F1 Team +1 lap 2 4
10. 22 Yuki Tsunoda Japan Scuderia AlphaTauri +1 lap 1 11
11. 5 Sebastian Vettel Germany Aston Martin F1 Team +1 lap 0 4
12. 3 Daniel Ricciardo Australia McLaren Racing +1 lap 0 8
13. 10 Pierre Gasly France Scuderia AlphaTauri +1 lap 0 6
14. 47 Mick Schumacher Germany Haas F1 Team +1 lap 0 0
15. 18 Lance Stroll Canada Aston Martin F1 Team +1 lap 0 2
16. 6 Nicholas Latifi Canada Williams Racing +2 laps 0 0
17. 20 Kevin Magnussen Denmark Haas F1 Team +2 laps 0 14
18. 23 Alexander Albon Thailand Williams Racing +2 laps 0 3
20. 24 Zhou Guanyu China Alfa Romeo F1 Team DNF 0 1
2. 16 Charles Leclerc Monaco Scuderia Ferrari DNF 0 97

2022 Constructor Standings

Pos Picture Team Points
1. Red Bull Racing 195
1. Scuderia Ferrari 169
3. Mercedes-AMG F1 Team 120
4. McLaren Racing 50
5. Alfa Romeo Racing 39
6. Alpine F1 Team 34
7. Scuderia AlphaTauri 17
8. Haas F1 Team 15
9. Aston Martin F1 Team 6
10. Williams Racing 3

Here are the team-by-team highlights:

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