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Valtteri Bottas wins Turkish Grand Prix as Max Verstappen takes over points lead

Yahoo Sports US logo Yahoo Sports US 10/10/2021 Nick Bromberg

Max Verstappen has the points lead again.

Verstappen finished second to Valtteri Bottas in Sunday's Turkish Grand Prix to take a six-point lead over Lewis Hamilton with six races to go in the Formula 1 season. Hamilton finished fifth — eight points behind Verstappen — after he made a pit stop with less than 10 laps to go.

Hamilton started 11th and had worked his way up to third on a damp track. Teams had to use the intermediate rain tires for the entirety of the race and Hamilton had moved up without making a pit stop. But Mercedes wanted him to pit for laps and he finally relented on lap 50 of the 58-lap race.

That move didn't work out. Hamilton pitted from third and rejoined the race where he finished. He pitted with a 10-second lead over fourth place and could have held on for a podium. Barring a catastrophe, he would have finished no lower than fifth without pitting. Instead, he pitted and ended up losing five points. 

Video: Frustrated Hamilton says he should have 'followed his gut' in Turkey (Reuters)

Hamilton would have scored 15 points for finishing in third. He got 10 for finishing fifth. He took over the points lead by two over Verstappen two weeks ago at the Russian Grand Prix after he won the race and Verstappen finished second.

Bottas started first after Hamilton was the fastest in qualifying but had to start 11th because of a 10-place grid penalty for new engine parts in his car. Bottas held the lead from Verstappen on the start of the race and then passed Charles LeClerc for the win after LeClerc had inherited the lead by not pitting when Bottas and Verstappen did.

Sergio Perez finished third and LeClerc finished fourth. 

Formula 1 is off next weekend before the United States Grand Prix at the Circuit of the Americas in Austin, Texas, on Oct. 24. Hamilton has won five of the eight races contested at the track and Verstappen has never won there, though he could be the favorite entering the lone U.S. race weekend of the season.


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