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Verstappen Secures Third Consecutive Formula One Title

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verstappen secures third consecutive formula one title
verstappen secures third consecutive formula one title
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Max Verstappen celebrated his third consecutive world title on Saturday, as he secured the championship with a second-place finish behind newcomer Oscar Piastri in a dramatic sprint race at the Qatar Grand Prix. Verstappen, describing his achievement as “fantastic,” only needed three points to clinch the title.

Red Bull’s Sergio Perez, Verstappen’s only remaining rival, was involved in a collision and retired from the race, solidifying Verstappen’s position as the champion. Perez’s early retirement made him the first “Saturday champion” since Nelson Piquet in South Africa in 1983.

Verstappen, aged 26, expressed his gratitude to his team, stating, “I don’t know what to say. Incredible year. Thank you for providing me with such a car. It has been a pleasure so far this year.” Red Bull team boss Christian Horner also praised Verstappen, calling him “phenomenal” and “out of this world.”

Although Oscar Piastri’s victory marked McLaren’s first win since 2021, it was only the second time this season that Red Bull had been defeated.

Verstappen’s championship win, with six races still remaining in the season, places him in an exclusive group of three-time champions alongside Jack Brabham, Niki Lauda, Nelson Piquet, Ayrton Senna, and Jackie Stewart. He also joins an even more elite group of those who have won three titles in a row, including Juan Manuel Fangio, Michael Schumacher, Sebastian Vettel, and Lewis Hamilton.

Verstappen expressed his joy, saying, “This has been a fantastic feeling and it has been a fantastic year. We have had some great races, and I am super proud of the team job, and it is so enjoyable to be a part of this group of people. To win three times is incredible.” He added that he had no specific records in sight but wanted to continue racing and winning.

Max Verstappen, starting from pole position, now holds an unassailable 184-point lead with six races remaining in the season.

Oscar Piastri, who won the race, said, “I am very happy, but that was a stressful race. We did a great job.”

The race results saw Lando Norris from McLaren finishing third, followed by Mercedes’ George Russell and Lewis Hamilton. The Ferraris of Carlos Sainz and Charles Leclerc secured the sixth and seventh positions. Alex Albon from Williams finished eighth, while two-time champion Fernando Alonso from Aston Martin came in ninth, and Pierre Gasly from Alpine claimed the tenth position.

The sprint race at the Lusail International Circuit was filled with incidents, with Piastri making an impressive start. However, several skirmishes behind him saw Norris drop from second to sixth. Verstappen was in fifth place before a safety car intervention was triggered when Liam Lawson ran off-track.

After multiple safety car interventions and a change in tire strategies, Verstappen showcased Red Bull’s speed, moving up to third and eventually challenging Piastri for the lead. With Verstappen’s strong performance, it became clear that he was determined to secure his third championship with a victory.

On lap 16, Verstappen made a bold move to pass George Russell and began his pursuit of Piastri, solidifying his status as the Formula One world champion for the third consecutive year.