The United States grand prix was one of the most fun and yet most controversial races of the season, with Max Verstappen beating Lewis Hamilton to the win.
Formula One arrived in Austin, Texas hoping for a straightforward weekend. While it quite did not have the number of stewards controversies and rain delays as Japan had. There were still plenty of events throughout the weekend to make it memorable.
On Friday night, it was announced that the first American driver (since the disappointment that was Scott Speed in 2006/07) had been signed to Williams in the name of Logan Sergeant. Now, while this is super licence pending, it is more than likely that he will be on the gird next year.
Sadly, however, just before qualifying it was announced that Formula One had lost one of its greatest pioneers in Dietrich Mateschitz. The man who created Red Bull Racing and is responsible for eight of the currents grid careers. He did more for F1 than just set up two teams. The man gave us things like the Austrian grand prix and champions such as Sebastian Vettel and Verstappen. So, he will be missed.
The next big racing moment of the weekend was in qualifying when Carlos Sainz took his second pole of the season ahead of Charles Leclerc (who would start p12 due to an ICE change penalty). This therefore set up an exciting race rather than just the Verstappen processions we have had of late.
So, Sunday, Race Day, beckoned. The endless waves of celebrities who never watch F1 but act like they are obsessed with it have left the grid. The pointless jet fighters had flown by, and then it was time for the lights to go out.
This is where we arrive at the race’s first moment of real drama heading up the hill into turn 1 Carlos Sainz went into turn one later than George Russell behind who tagged Sainz and spun him around sending Sainz to the back of the field. This led to Russell gaining a penalty for his trouble. The race calmed down for around 20 laps as Verstappen pulled away from Lewis Hamilton and the race was seen to be decided. This was until Valtteri Bottas decided to spin and dump his Alfa Romeo in the gravel.
This perked the fans up a bit as the safety car was brought out, which bunched up the field and made for an exciting fight. Well, it did, at least for a lap until Fernando Alonso and Lance Stroll had an incident which sent Alonso flying and stroll out of the race. This again brought out the safety car, which created some spice in the pit stops and allowed Hamilton to lead the grand prix, with Verstappen down in 8th place due to a bad pit stop for the Red Bull driver. This set up a great finale in which max drove like a man possessed through to overtaking Lewis with just a few laps to go and winning what was the best US grand prix in recent memory.
This was not the end of the drama as on Sunday evening Alonso was given a 30-second penalty and lost all his points due to a Haas protest over Alonso losing his mirror halfway through the race. This has been appealed, and we should learn the results in the next few weeks.
So, America you have bought Formula One finally slightly ruined it with all the Pomp and grandeur that is needless like all the random celebs and the pointless boxing style driver introductions. But at least the race delivered compared to the earlier us race in Miami, which was a complete and utter farce.