Bottas on Pole in Brazil after Sprint race win

2021 Sao Paulo Grand Prix, Friday - Jiri Krenek

Mercedes driver Valtteri Bottas will start from pole position at Sunday’s São Paulo Grand Prix in Brazil after wining the final F1 Sprint race of the season.

Valtteri jumped Red Bull’s Max Verstappen to take the lead and held on for the win while Max finished second and Ferrari’s Carlos Sainz completed the podium. Lewis Hamilton finished in 10th after a DQ suffered for an errant rear wing during qualifying leaving him to start the sprint race in 20th. Lewis managed a terrific recovery drive to 5th place and will start in 10th on Sunday but that, in the hands of Lewis and with a new engine, is completely manageable.

The drama around Lewis’s rear wing on Friday and most of Saturday morning dominated the press and social media and for touching the Mercedes in Parc fermé after qualifying, Max Verstappen was given a 50,000 Euro penalty.

The ridiculous accusations that Max did something to Lewis’s rear wing by touching it was beyond logical. The commentary was also also fueled by the FIA saying they are going to crack down on this type of thing in Parc fermé. For decades drivers have looked, poked and prodded competitors cars and in my opinion, this has been completely blown out of proportion as some sort of contrition for penalizing Lewis.

Lewis’s rear wing issue wasn’t his fault so there’s no reason to blame him and he put in a terrific recovery drive on Saturday covering, as much as he could, for a team error. The team radioing him to be sure and not touch other cars in Parc fermé was a cheeky jab at Max but tedious nonetheless.

Sprint Race Results:

PosNameCarGapBest Time
1Valtteri BottasMercedes1m12.3s
2Max VerstappenRed Bull-Honda+1.17s1m12.114s
3Carlos Sainz Jr.Ferrari+18.723s1m13.167s
4Sergio PérezRed Bull-Honda+19.787s1m13.11s
5Lewis HamiltonMercedes+20.872s1m12.357s
6Lando NorrisMcLaren-Mercedes+22.558s1m12.994s
7Charles LeclercFerrari+25.056s1m13.14s
8Pierre GaslyAlphaTauri-Honda+34.158s1m13.342s
9Esteban OconAlpine-Renault+34.632s1m13.615s
10Sebastian VettelAston Martin-Mercedes+34.867s1m13.558s
11Daniel RicciardoMcLaren-Mercedes+35.869s1m13.463s
12Fernando AlonsoAlpine-Renault+36.578s1m13.397s
13Antonio GiovinazziAlfa Romeo-Ferrari+41.88s1m13.627s
14Lance StrollAston Martin-Mercedes+44.037s1m13.666s
15Yuki TsunodaAlphaTauri-Honda+46.15s1m13.747s
16Nicholas LatifiWilliams-Mercedes+46.76s1m13.934s
17George RussellWilliams-Mercedes+47.739s1m14.056s
18Kimi RäikkönenAlfa Romeo-Ferrari+50.014s1m13.9s
19Mick SchumacherHaas-Ferrari+1m01.68s1m14.387s
20Nikita MazepinHaas-Ferrari+1m07.474s1m14.583s
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Either Bottas was especially easy with his tires or Max’s car wasn’t 100% Probably a combination of both.

Peter Stinchcomb

Thank you for having a great perspective on this.

Glen Mhor

Good to have a little humour amongst all the high octane emotion. You missed Vettel’s comment. That was funnier.