Lewis Hamilton stumbled with his strategy and it has cost him first place for the time being.
Valtteri Bottas claimed the checkered flag on Sunday at the Turkish Grand Prix, but Max Verstappen was the winner for purposes of the bigger picture. Verstappen finished second and the podium finish ahead of fifth place Lewis Hamilton gives him a boost in the season-long F1 standings.
Verstappen reclaims first place ahead of the three-race Western Hemisphere schedule starting in two weeks. Verstappen came into the Turkish Grand Prix trailing Hamilton by two points. Following the race, he now leads by six points.
Hamilton had the best performance in Saturday qualifying, but started the race in 11th position after a ten-slot penalty. Bottas finished second in qualifying and claimed the pole for the race. He didn’t go wire-to-wire, but led for a vast majority of the race. Charles Leclerc passed Bottas when the latter pitted.
This is only the fourth race not won by either Verstappen or Hamilton. But it is the 14th of 16 races in which at least one of them has finished top two. It’s been a dominant season for the two of them and the final leader will likely come down to the season-finale race in Abu Dhabi.