F1: Hamilton Wins Spanish GP In Another 1-2 Finish For Mercedes; Verstappen Bags 3rd

Lewis Hamilton secured his career's 76th win as Mercedes bagged its fifth consecutive 1-2 finish of the season with Valtteri Bottas coming in second in the 2019 Spanish GP.

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Mercedes continues to dominate the 2019 Formula 1 season and took its fifth straight 1-2 finish in the Spanish Grand Prix in Barcelona, Spain. Reigning world champion Lewis Hamilton secured the win beating teammate Valtteri Bottas to the top position, while Red Bull Racing's Max Verstappen secured the last place on the podium, his second this season. With the latest win, Hamilton moves into the points lead in the driver standings and is seven points clear of Bottas for the world championship.

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Hamilton passed Bottas and Vettel to take the lead in the opening lap after a three-way battle

While Bottas secured the pole position, Hamilton started at P2 but took the lead in the opening lap after a three-way duel between Bottas and Sebastian Vettel of Ferrari. However, Vettel ran deep into Turn 1 and locked up his front, while Bottas backed out of contention for P1 and settled in second place behind his teammate. Vettel ran wide again on the second corner only take join back in P3, albeit blocking Ferrari teammate Charles Leclerc in the process. The incident allowed Verstappen to moved up to third, which pushed Vettel to fourth.

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Ferrari drivers Sebastian Vettel and Charles Leclerc were strong challengers initially but faded in the second half of the race

Hamilton built up his lead on the following laps with Bottas staying right on his tail. By Lap 12, Vettel's pace started diminishing due to a flat spot he picked up and the German let Leclerc move up to P4. Hereon, the top five positions remained unchanged for the remainder of the race. Hamilton, Bottas and Leclerc opted for a one-stop strategy in the Spanish GP, while Verstappen and Vettel took a second stop as well. For Vettel though, the first stop was early and rather unplanned for a tyre change. The Ferrari driver made his second pitstop on Lap 41 and joined back behind Pierre Gasly of Red Bull in sixth place. However, the Vettel passed Gasly to take P5 once again in the following laps, despite the resistance from the Red Bull driver.

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Lando Norris and Lance Stroll were involved in a collision bringing out the safety car on Lap 46

Verstappen too was dropped to P4 after his single stop with Leclerc moving up to third. But the driver pushed to move back to P3 while competing on a fresh set of tyres just before the safety car was deployed on Lap 46. McLaren's Lando Norris and Racing Point Lance Stroll were involved in an incident making contact that left Stroll in the barriers and Norris' McLaren damaged. With the safety car on track, the top drivers chose to make a second pitstop, which allowed Verstappen to retake third place from Leclerc while Hamilton and Bottas' position remained unchanged. The race resumed on Lap 54, and Hamilton held on to the lead crossing the chequered flag by a gap of 4.074s over Bottas. Verstappen followed in third place, 7.679s behind the race leader, while Vettel finished fourth two seconds after.

Leclerc was attacked by Gasly for fifth but the latter failed to make the pass and had to settle for P6 behind the second Ferrari. Haas driver Kevin Magnussen finished seventh after making contact with teammate Romain Grosjean earlier in the race, and held on to the position while Grosjean dropped to P10. McLaren's Carlos Sainz Jr finished eighth ahead of Daniil Kvyat of Torro Rosso, both drivers securing crucial points for their respective teams.

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Torro Rosso driver Alex Albon finished outside of points in 11th place followed by Renault drivers Daniel Ricciardo and Nico Hulkenberg. Alfa Romeo driver Kimi Raikkonen finished 14th ahead of Sergio Perez of Racing Point while Antonio Giovinazzi of Alfa Romeo took 16th. Williams drivers George Russell and Robert Kubica were the last to finish the Spanish GP.

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