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Russell took victory in the sprint race in Brazil

George Russell, photo Mercedes

George Russell won the sprint race in Brazil. The Mercedes driver started from third position and showed excellent speed on the track in Sao Paulo. Carlos Sainz (Ferrari) and Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes) finished second and third.

The weather at the Interlagos track was again dry and sunny and slightly cooler compared to the second training session. The air temperature was 22 degrees, and that of the asphalt – 36. The probability of rain during the sprint in Brazil was not great – 10%. The atmosphere was wonderful both on the track and in the stands.

Almost all the drivers decided to go with soft, except for Verstappen and Latifi, who were with medium.

Magnussen made a phenomenal start followed by Verstappen. The Red Bull driver defended his position from Russell and Norris. Behind them were Sainz, Ocon, Alonso, Hamilton, Perez and Leclerc. Further back, Gasly, Stroll and Schumacher gained several places. Albon lost several positions, as did the Alfa Romeo racers. Alonso started to lose speed due to a collision with Ocon. The Spaniard went through the pits to change the front wing, which broke off due to further contact with his team-mate.

On the third lap, Verstappen passed Magnussen with DRS on the start-finish straight. The Dane lost positions to Russell and Sainz. At the same time, Alonso complained on the radio about Ocon’s behavior.

By lap six, Verstappen led ahead of Russell, Sainz, Hamilton, Magnussen, Norris, Perez, Leclerc, Ocon and Gasly. Alonso was last after changing his front spoiler. Meanwhile, air traffic control was reviewing the starts of Hamilton, Zhu and Ricciardo.

On the ninth lap, Perez dealt with Magnussen while Verstappen led ahead of Russell, Sainz and Hamilton. Stroll left no room for Vettel. The German has to go through the grass to avoid a shot. A lap later, Vettel passed his teammate.

At the sprint halve in Brazil, Verstappen was fending off Russell in both DRS zones. Behind them, Hamilton was catching up with Sainz. Fifth was Perez, Magnussen, Leclerc and Norris. Russell made several more unsuccessful attacks on Verstappen. At the same time, yellow flags were raised due to Albon stopping in the first sector of the track. The Williams driver dropped out of the sprint race in Brazil.

On lap 15, Russell overtook Verstappen on the straight ahead of turn #4. The young Brit was greeted on the radio. Sainz was defending himself from Hamilton.

Stroll received a 10-second time penalty for the incident with Vettel, while Verstappen was cautioned for not crossing the track. At the front, Russell began to break away, while Sainz and Hamilton stuck behind the car of their Dutch rival.

19 laps after the start of the sprint race in Brazil, Sainz overtook Verstappen at the first turn. The two had contact that resulted in part of the RB18’s front wing breaking off. At the front, Russell led by 4 seconds. Magnussen was in seventh place before being overtaken by Norris.

On the penultimate lap, Perez asked if he could take Verstappen’s position because he needed an extra point, but was ignored by Red Bull. By the end of the sprint in Brazil, Russell crossed the start-finish line first, followed by Sainz and Hamilton. Verstappen and Perez finished fourth and fifth. Sixth remained Leclerc. The Ferrari driver was followed by Norris, Magnussen, Vettel and Gasly.

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