Max Verstappen cruised to victory in the 2023 Spanish Grand Prix scoring the maximum 26 points to extend his lead at the top of the Formula 1 drivers’ championship.
With Sergio Perez starting outside the top ten and 39 points back in the standings, Verstappen took full advantage and extended that gap by 14 with an unchallenged lights-to-flag victory.
There was no movement in the championship positions behind him, but Lewis Hamilton‘s superb second place and a rare off-day for Fernando Alonso means the Brit is now just 12 points behind his oldest rival for third.
Zhou Guanyu was the only driver outside the top ten to score any points with that ninth-placed finish doubling his points tally for the season and levelling him up with teammate Valtteri Bottas.
George Russell also gained points on Carlos Sainz, after the Spaniard looked like he might take the lead at the start of the race.
Sainz got a good launch and despite Verstappen closing him off early, still looked to hold it around the outside of the Red Bull.
However, the championship leader gave him very little room to play with and had the pace on the exit of the corner to hold the lead. From then on it was a procession at the front, as Verstappen notched his fifth win of the season, from seven rounds.
F1 2023 Drivers’ Standings after Spanish GP
|1||Max Verstappen||Red Bull||170|
|2||Sergio Perez||Red Bull||117|
|3||Fernando Alonso||Aston Martin||99|
|8||Lance Stroll||Aston Martin||35|
|14||Valtteri Bottas||Alfa Romeo||4|
|15||Zhou Guanyu||Alfa Romeo||4|
|19||Nyck de Vries||AlphaTauri||0|
F1 2023 Constructors’ Standings after Spanish GP
With steadiness in the drivers’ championship, there is movement between the constructors. Mercedes leapfrog Aston Martin for second place after leaving the Monaco GP just a point behind the Silverstone-based team.
It will be a battle to watch going forward as Mercedes‘ upgrades start to pay dividends, while there’s no denying they have the stronger driver lineup. Starting ahead of his teammate for the first time this season, Lance Stroll wasn’t able to fight at the front and ended up falling back into Alonso.
The Spaniard sportingly held station in the closing stages but could’ve easily taken sixth place, he even had time to wave to his home support on the final lap.
That’s the only major change, while Zhou‘s two points mean Alfa Romeo are now level on points with Haas, the American team lead courtesy of Nico Hulkenberg‘s seventh place in Melbourne.
What is the next F1 2023 race?
With the F1 circus finished in Spain, the next race is the 2023 Canadian Grand Prix which will be held at the Circuit Gilles-Villeneuve in Montreal over the weekend of June 16-18.