Verstappen targets ninth straight win in the Netherlands

Given the lack of rivals to stand up to him, Max Verstappen must look for other motivations.

Oliver Thansan
Oliver Thansan
25 August 2023 Friday 22:26
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Verstappen targets ninth straight win in the Netherlands

Given the lack of rivals to stand up to him, Max Verstappen must look for other motivations. The Dutchman, the absolute leader of the Formula 1 World Championship with 125 points ahead, will have a great incentive in this Sunday's race: equaling at home, at the Dutch Grand Prix, the record of nine consecutive victories in one year of Sebastian Vettel from 2013. A record closer to that of Red Bull after achieving the ninth pole position of the course without problems this Saturday and the third consecutive one at the Zandvoort circuit. 'Mad Max' will start ahead of the British Lando Norris and George Russell, while Fernando Alonso will start fifth and Carlos Sainz, sixth.

"It was a very difficult qualifying, the new asphalt was very slippery. It was about accumulating laps and staying out of trouble. We had to take risks, but I enjoyed the last lap. The pressure at home is extra but when you manage to do it It's incredible", explained the reigning champion after sealing first place.

The Dutch track began as a trap, a large part of the asphalt was wet. Several drivers were spit out in their first forays, including Verstappen, who needed a few laps to find the least wet lane to pass easily into Q2 as second, behind Albon. Others, like Leclerc, suffered until their last attempt to avoid falling into the first sieve.

The next stake reflected some rays of sun, which gave relief to the protagonists and began the dominance of the Red Bull ogre, who was the fastest without much fanfare. The increasingly better conditions of the track caused the times to drop without pause, turn by turn, and in that dance of times Lewis Hamilton ended up stumbled, out of the final fight for pole due to a last lap where he found traffic.

Q3 began without black clouds in the sky but with two red flags, first due to an accident by Sargeant and then another impact against Leclerc's fence. Once the two walls were repaired, the session resumed definitively with only 4 minutes left, forcing the drivers to risk their final time at one lap. Verstappen, who returned to the track in third position behind the McLarens, accepted the challenge and in his last attempt he easily passed Norris with more than half a second of margin. Another ride for 'Mad Max'.

1º M. Verstappen Red Bull 1'10"567

2º L. Norris McLaren 1'11"104 00"537

3º G. Russell Mercedes 1'11"294 00"727

4º A. Albon Williams 1'11"419 00"852

5º F. Alonso Aston Martin 1'11"506 00"939

6th C. Sainz Ferrari 1'11"754 01"187

7th S. Perez Red Bull 1'11"880 01"313

8º O. Piastri McLaren 1'11"938 01"371

9º C. Leclerc Ferrari 1'12"665 02"098

10º L Sargeant Williams 1'16"748 06"181

11º Lance Stroll 

12º Pierre Gasly

13º Lewis Hamilton 

14º Yuki Tsunoda

15º Nico Hulkenberg

16ºGuanyu Zhou

17th Esteban Ocon

18º Kevin Magnussen

19ºValtteri Bottas 

20ºLiam Lawson