Formula 1 fans need to look for side stories to keep races interesting this season, as Red Bull's Max Verstappen continues his dominant, historic run. Unsurprisingly, Verstappen won the F1 2023 Brazilian Grand Prix but a couple of side stories are what kept it exciting and neither of which had anything to do with Red Bull's star driver.
The drama started before the actual racing did. During the formation lap, Ferrari's Charles Leclerc suddenly spun off the track, into a wall, ending his race before it even began. Leclerc told the media following the crash that he lost power steering, which kept him going straight heading into turn six. However, the engine then cut out for safety reasons, which locked the rear wheels, causing him to spin. After he crashed, he tried restarting the engine but the car repeated the same faults, so his race was over before lap one.
Once the race restarted, it became a typical 2023 F1 race. Verstappen, who started the race from pole position, never truly felt any pressure from McLaren's second-place Lando Norris. Norris had a good race, though, and finished in second, which he admitted is the best anyone can do this season.
However, what made things interesting during the final laps was the battle for third place. Red Bull's Sergio Perez was on a mission in Brazil, following last week's disappointing crash in Mexico, his hometown race. But Aston Martin's Fernando Alonso wasn't going to just let Perez take away his third-place podium finish. The two drivers put on a show, duking it out until the very last second. Alonso held onto his podium finish in the end but only just, giving fans some much-needed excitement.
As predictable as Verstappen's wins are each week, it's still fascinating to watch such a historic season unfold before our eyes. Not only did he clinch the drivers' title weeks ago, along with his team locking up the constructers' title, but he's already broken the record for most wins in a season and there are still two races left. If he wins the final two races, which seems likely at this point, his record may not be broken in my lifetime.
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