Updated: Nov 22, 2022
With Vettel announcing his retirement from Formula 1 on Thursday there was nobody who didn’t want to see him do well, unfortunately he was out in Q1 along with, Latifi, Gasly, Albon and Tsunoda. Q2 had some controversy as Perez was told he had a lap time deleted for exceeding track limits at turn 5, however this lap time was later reinstated as it transpired Perez was on the line, not over it. He did not do enough to make it into Q3, neither did Zhou, Magnussen, Stroll or Schumacher.
Ferrari with their single lap speed were racing around the track, in a surprising twist for most Mercedes started to interrupt Ferrari with Russell squeezing between the two. As the end of the session came Sainz was on provisional pole and Leclerc was set for P2, however, Russell had other plans, the Brit managed to pip Sainz for pole, securing his first ever pole position his Formula 1 career.
There were issues on Verstappen’s Red Bull which caused him to finish qualifying in P10, and with Perez in P11 it was not the day that Red Bull had been looking for.
Both Sainz and Russell were quick off the mark at lights out, Russell managed to hold on to his lead, defending into turn 1. Verstappen was on the attack, making his way up through the grid, which lead to a battle for 4th between the Dutchman, Norris and Hamilton. Russell had managed to lead the race for 31 laps before Leclerc on the DRS straight was able to dive around the inside of the Mercedes to take control of the race. Verstappen and Leclerc pitted on consecutive laps, which managed to work out for the Red Bull who got past Leclerc, before spinning slightly, which provided the Ferrari the opportunity to regain position.
After pitting and coming out P7, Russell had been on the move, after overtaking Perez he was sandwiched between both Red Bulls as he looked to battle it out with Verstappen in P4. Lap 45 saw Verstappen manage to overtake Leclerc again in a battle for 3rd behind Sainz and Hamilton, who were both still left to pit. Just 9 laps later another driver was overtaking Leclerc, as Russell managed to sneak around the outside on turn 1.
Questions were asked of Ferrari’s strategy again as lap 55 saw Leclerc pit, which put him out in P6 behind Hamilton and Perez, with just 15 laps to go it did not seem like the best choice to maximise points for the team.
Hamilton stormed through the field after his pit stop earlier in the race, overtaking Sainz in lap 63 to reach the podium places and then 2 laps later overtook his teammate Russell to claim P2. After starting P10 and P7 Verstappen and Hamilton made it to the top 2 steps of the podium with Russell in 3rd, and another double podium for Mercedes.