What the Emilia-Romagna GP Left behind for the Three Teams Fighting for the World Championship

Imola GP - Max Verstappen
Red Bull driver Max Verstappen of the Netherlands crosses the finish line as he wins the Emilia Romagna Formula One Grand Prix, at the Enzo and Dino Ferrari racetrack in Imola, Italy, Sunday, April 24, 2022. (Guglielmo Mangiapane, Pool via AP)

The Emilia-Romagna GP brought several surprises and against all odds the local team, Ferrari, could not dominate on track.

Friday’s qualifying and the sprint race had already given hints of what the GP of Emilia-Romagna would be like. In the first days the rain was present and chaos reigned on the wet track as several incidents that prevented some drivers from having a good pace took place. However, to the surprise of many, for Sunday’s race the weather changed.

Red Bull Achieved 1-2 after Six Years

Emilia-Romagna Grand Prix - Red Bull
Red Bull driver Max Verstappen, center, of the Netherlands, winner of the Emilia Romagna Formula One Grand Prix, celebrates on the podium with second placed Red Bull driver Sergio Perez, left, of Mexico, and third placed McLaren driver Lando Norris, of Britain, at the Enzo and Dino Ferrari racetrack, in Imola, Italy, Sunday, April 24, 2022. (AP Photo/Luca Bruno)

Red Bull did a great job this weekend. The Austrian team was not able to achieve a 1-2 in a Grand Prix since 2016, and at the Emilia-Romagna GP in this 2022, the Dutchman Max Verstappen and the Mexican Sergio “Checo” Pérez achieved it.

The reigning world champion had shown his frustration after having to abandon two of the three previous races and had even said that he saw no chance of fighting for the world championship. Perhaps that opinion has now changed, since at the Enzo e Dino Ferrari racetrack, the Dutchman achieved the Grand Chelem: Pole Position, victory, fastest lap and leader of all the laps of the race.

For his part, the Mexican driver achieved his second podium of the season and did it consecutively, getting second position in both Australia and the Emilia-Romagna GP.

With these results, Verstappen is second in the Drivers’ Championship with 59 points, and Pérez is third with 54 points. The best part of all for Red Bull is that it closed the lead over Ferrari in the Constructors’ Championship and only 11 points separate them.

Ferrari Couldn’t Find their Feet at Home

Emilia-Romagna GP - Ferrari
Ferrari driver Carlos Sainz of Spain walks after crashing during the Emilia Romagna Formula One Grand Prix, at the Enzo and Dino Ferrari racetrack, in Imola, Italy, Sunday, April 24, 2022. (AP Photo/Luca Bruno)

Until before the Emilia-Romagna GP, Ferrari has shown absolute dominance, at least, on the part of the Monegasque driver, Charles Leclerc, who has been on the podium in the three previous races. At the Australian GP, Leclerc’s car was unstoppable and for the experts there was no way that would change in the Grand Prix where the Tifosi would be local.

After this weekend, however, the Maranello team must be quite worried. Although Leclerc was able to score some points to maintain his lead in the Drivers’ Championship, he finished sixth after making a mistake.

On the other hand, Ferrari will have to pay attention to what is happening with the Spaniard, Carlos Sainz, since he dropped out in Australia and did it again here.

What about Lewis Hamilton at Mercedes?

GP of Emilia-Romagna - Mercedes
Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton of Britain walks at the end of the Emilia Romagna Formula One Grand Prix, at the Enzo and Dino Ferrari racetrack, in Imola, Italy, Sunday, April 24, 2022. (AP Photo/Luca Bruno)

Seven-time F1 champion Lewis Hamilton is having a lackluster start to the season and confirmed it again at the Emilia-Romagna GP where he failed to score points.

His frustration has been evident even though he has not had to abandon any race, but his Mercedes is causing him many problems that have led him to be overtaken by his teammate, George Russell.

He started in position #14, as he did not perform better in the sprint race than in qualifying and things did not improve for the race.

Russell is the driver who has stood up for Mercedes so far this season, scoring points in each of the four races, and this has moved him up to fourth in the Drivers’ Championship.

Despite Hamilton’s problems, Russell’s results put Mercedes in third place in the Constructors’ Championship.

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