The 2023 F1 Canadian Grand Prix was business as usual–Max Verstappen led the entire race from lights to flag while Fernando Alonso battled Lewis Hamilton to second place. While it wasn’t the most eventful race this year, it was a classic example of a Canadian GP with a densely packed midfield and battles going to the very last lap.
Verstappen dominated again, though with less a gap to the following cars than usual. At the end of the race, Alonso trailed Verstappen by just eight seconds, while Hamilton followed Alonso by three seconds. Behind them, the battle for seventh was red hot for the last 20 laps of the race with Alex Albon defending flawlessly against a charging Esteban Ocon to hold a stellar seventh-place finish for Williams. His efforts earned him a much-deserved driver of the day, and it must be said that a seventh-place in a Williams is an unbelievable result.
The shock result of the weekend is George Russell putting his Mercedes in the wall at the exit of turn nine near the start of the race. He managed to go 40 laps after a pit stop but retired with brake wear issues. Lando Norris received a five-second penalty for driving slowly behind the safety car and finished 13th after his penalty. Hometown hero Lance Stroll finished ninth place ahead of Valtteri Bottas in tenth, while the two Ferraris of Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz finished in an anonymous fourth and fifth respectively.
Verstappen’s lead in the championship is only growing with his 41st career win, matching Ayrton Senna. This was Red Bull’s 100th win as a constructor, and there are sure to be plenty more on the horizon. Though Aston Martin and Mercedes inch closer to the lead Red Bull, the battle will be for second place rather than first throughout the season.
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