FROM THE ENVIENT TO BAKU. Sergio Perez wins the Azerbaijani Grand Prix and with him on the podium are two riders out of the fight for the World Championship: Sebastian Vettel and Pierre Gasly. It ends zero to zero between the two great challengers: Max Verstappen is eliminated by the burst of a tire on lap 47, Hamilton by an error on the penultimate lap. Ferrari closes between points, well below expectations after pole position: Charles Leclerc misses the podium in the final and is fourth, Carlos Sainz eighth, penalized by an error in the early stages of the race.
Baku gave a crazy and dangerous race, as is inevitable when you run at crazy speeds between two walls, however padded. At the start Leclerc maintains pole position, but Hamilton, Verstappen and Perez have all passed after eight laps. The illusion that Ferrari is back in competition disappears: qualifying is one thing, the race is another. In the pit stop carousel, Gasly also overtakes Leclerc in fourth position, while the two Red Bulls pass Hamilton, delayed in returning to the track by Gasly’s passage into the pit lane.
The twists and turns begin on lap 31: the left rear tire of Lance Stroll’s Aston Martin explodes on the straight, on the edge of 300 kilometers per hour. The machine bounces off the protective barriers. Unharmed driver and safety car. It is a signal. On lap 47, the same dynamic: this time it is the left rear of Verstappen’s Red Bull to collapse dangerously on the straight. The race management suspends the Grand Prix. The last two laps will be covered with a standing start: an unprecedented, spectacular mini-race with this grid (the top ten positions): Perez (Red Bull), Hamilton (Mercedes), Vettel (Aston Martin), Gasly (AlphaTauri) , Leclerc (Ferrari), Tsunoda (AlphaTauri), Norris (McLaren), Sainz (Ferrari), Ricciardo (McLaren), Alonso (Alpine).
When the traffic lights go out again, Hamilton overtakes Perez, but arrives too fast at the first corner and ends up on the escape route. It is an unforgivable mistake, which costs the English driver to return to the top of the standings. Vettel sees himself on the podium (Aston Martin is the fourth team with which he succeeds, after Toro Rosso, Red Bull and Ferrari), Gasly resists Leclerc. Following Norris, Alonso, Tsunoda, Sainz, Ricciardo and Raikkonen.
Drivers standings: 1. Verstappen 105; 2. Hamilton 101; 3. Perez 69; 4. Norris 66; 5. Leclerc 52; 6.Bottas 47; 7. Sainz 42. Builders: 1. Red Bull 174; 2. Mercedes 148; 3. Ferrari 94; 4. McLaren92. Next meeting on 20 June at Le Castellet for the French GP.