It was three wins in a row for Max Verstappen as he cantered to a comfortable Spanish Grand Prix 2023 win. Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton scored his second podium of the season with a P2 finish, while his teammate George Russell finished P3, giving Mercedes a much-needed double podium finish.
Sergio Pérez finished P4 ahead of Carlos Sainz (P5), with Lance Stroll in P6 ahead of Fernando Alonso (P7), with Esteban Ocon (P8), Yuki Tsunoda (P9) and Zhou Guanyu (P10) rounding out the top-ten places.
Verstappen sped off the line, holding off a charging Sainz to keep the lead. Further down, Hamilton collided with compatriot Lando Norris, which saw Lance Stroll move up to P3. Following Norris’ collision with Hamilton, the McLaren driver had to pit, which saw him drop to the back of the grid.
By Lap 5, Verstappen had opened a two-second gap to Sainz, with Stroll in third place, ahead of Hamilton and Ocon, who rounded out the top-five places at the time.
Hamilton re-took P3 from Stroll on Lap 8, putting in a neat overtake, going on the inside of the Aston Martin driver. Further down the grid, Charles Leclerc, having started P19, was up to P16, while Sergio Pérez had made his way into the top ten, taking P8 from Zhou Guanyu. George Russell, meanwhile, was making moves. On Lap 11, he got past Ocon for P5, going past the Frenchman going into Turn 1.
Stroll was the first of the top five to pit on Lap 14, re-joining the race in P12. Sainz came in on the next lap and came out just behind his teammate in P9. Leclerc came in for this stop on Lap 17 and re-joined in P18.
By Lap 20, Verstappen had opened up a gap of over eight seconds to Hamilton in second place. The veteran Brit came in for his pit stop on Lap 25 and re-joined the track in P5 behind Sainz. His teammate Russell came in on the next lap and got back on the track in P5, with his teammate moving one place ahead.
Verstappen came in for his stop and re-joined in first place, a good six seconds ahead of Pérez, demonstrating his dominance throughout the race. The Mexican came in for his stop on Lap 28 and re-joined in P9.
Verstappen had built up a gap of over 13 seconds to Hamilton by Lap 30, while his teammate was also climbing back up the grid, getting past Fernando Alonso on the main straight for P8 on the same lap. Russell, meanwhile, got past Sainz to move himself into the podium places on Lap 35 as he breezed through the helpless Ferrari driver. Verstappen, by this point, was over 15 seconds ahead of Hamilton, as the race crossed lap 40.
Alonso came in for his second stop, switching to the hard tyres, on Lap 46, re-joining in P10. Russell also came in for his second stop on the same lap and switched to the softs, re-joining in P4. Alonso was up to P8 by Lap 50 as he got past Zhou Guanyu and Yuki Tsunoda with relative ease.
Hamilton came in for his second stop on Lap 51, switching to the soft tyres, while Pérez pitted on the same lap as well and he also switched to the soft compounds. Hamilton re-joined the track in P2, but Pérez dropped to P5. In the meantime, Alonso took evasive action to get past Ocon on the main straight, moving up to P7.
Verstappen became the final driver to pit for his second stop on Lap 53 and re-joined with a 16-second lead as he came out on the soft tyres. Pérez got past Sainz for P4 on Lap 54.
Verstappen eventually cruised to another win, with Hamilton finishing second ahead of Russell in third, giving the Silver Arrows a double podium.
Verstappen’s win now puts him 43 points clear of Sergio Pérez in the Drivers’ Standings, with Mercedes’ double-podium finish seeing them take the second place in the Constructors’ Standings.