The victory gave Verstappen a further eight world championship points, but the Dutchman had long been determined to win a third consecutive world title in Formula 1. To date, he has won fourteen of seventeen Grands Prix and three of five sprint races. With 441 points, Verstappen is no less than 213 points clear of his Mexican team-mate Sergio Perez, who finished fifth in the sprint race. Hamilton is third with 240 points.
Nevertheless, Verstappen has no intention of backing down. He started on pole and only had to accelerate on the first lap to keep Hamilton and Leclerc at bay. Once he opened up a gap, he continued to pull lap after lap. “The pace of the car was very good,” Verstappen replied. “I’ll need that on Sunday. Starting from sixth will be a bit different than in a sprint race. I hope I can make it a good catch-up race because I definitely want to win.”
Verstappen could win a third consecutive United States Grand Prix on Sunday. He would tie his own record with his fifteenth win of the season. Also, it was his fiftieth Grand Prix victory, bringing him within one win of Frenchman Alain Prost on the all-time leaderboard. Only Hamilton (103), Germany’s Michael Schumacher (91) and Sebastian Vettel (53) have won more.
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