Bottas wins Turkish GP as Verstappen retakes F1 lead

Valtteri Bottas won a Turkish Grand Prix for Mercedes on Sunday while Red Bull's Max Verstappen finished second to take back the Formula One world championship lead and move six points clear of Lewis Hamilton.

Published : Oct 10, 2021 19:24 IST , Istanbul

Mercedes' Valtteri Bottas celebrates on the podium after winning the Turkish GP.
Mercedes' Valtteri Bottas celebrates on the podium after winning the Turkish GP.

Mercedes' Valtteri Bottas celebrates on the podium after winning the Turkish GP.

Valtteri Bottas ended his year-long drought with a dominant victory in Turkey on Sunday while unhappy Mercedes team mate Lewis Hamilton finished fifth and lost the Formula One championship lead to Red Bull's Max Verstappen.

Verstappen, 24, was runner-up and 14.584 seconds behind the Finn at a wet Istanbul Park to overturn a two-point deficit to Hamilton and walk away six points clear with six races remaining. Red Bull team mate Sergio Perez finished third with Ferrari's Charles Leclerc fourth and ahead of seven-time world champion Hamilton, who had started 11th due to an engine penalty.


"It's been a while, but feels good. I think from my side probably one of the best races I've had ever," said Bottas, who started on pole position and was never threatened.

"Apart from that one little slide, everything was under control," he added.

The victory was the Finn's first since Russia in September last year.

Verstappen, who started on the front row, had a quiet race and said it had all been about tyre management.

"I'm happy to be on the podium. I think it's been close the whole year and I'm pretty sure in Austin it will be a good battle with Mercedes, so we just have to keep pushing, keep trying," he said.

The US Grand Prix in Texas is the next race on October 24.

Hamilton might have also been on the podium but Mercedes called him in, against his judgement, for a late stop from third place for a fresh set of intermediate tyres with the track drying.

"We shouldn't have come in man. Massive (tyre) graining. I told you," said the angry Briton in heated radio exchanges as he realised he had lost two places in the pits.

He pointed out afterwards that Alpine driver Esteban Ocon, who finished 10th, had managed to make one set of tyres last the entire race. Had he stayed out and kept third, Hamilton would be only a point behind Verstappen.


"We thought we could finish third without stopping or, if a dry line emerged, maybe going to a soft tyre," said Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff. "Then we saw Leclerc dropping off and Lewis was dropping off and it was clear we wouldn't make it to the end," he added.

Spaniard Carlos Sainz was voted driver of the day for going from the back of the grid, due to power unit penalties, to eighth for Ferrari. AlphaTauri's Pierre Gasly was sixth with Lando Norris seventh for McLaren and Lance Stroll ninth for Aston Martin.

Sign in to unlock all user benefits
  • Get notified on top games and events
  • Save stories to read later
  • Access to comment on every story
  • Sign up / manage to our newsletters with a single click
  • Get notified by email for early bird access to discounts & offers to our products
Sign in


Comments have to be in English, and in full sentences. They cannot be abusive or personal. Please abide to our community guidelines for posting your comment