Azerbaijan Grand Prix: Perez overtakes Leclerc to win sprint race
Red Bull’s Sergio Perez overtook Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc to win the sprint at the Azerbaijan Grand Prix.
The Mexican, who qualified second to Leclerc in the sprint shootout earlier on Saturday, passed the Ferrari shortly after an early safety-car period.
Championship leader Max Verstappen finished third, after his car suffered damage in an early collision with George Russell’s Mercedes.
Russell took fourth, from Ferrari’s Carlos Sainz.
Aston Martin’s Fernando Alonso was sixth. Lewis Hamilton was seventh, losing out when Alonso made an opportunistic overtake as he took advantage of the seven-time champion failing to pass Sainz into the first corner at the restart.
Leclerc, who has taken two pole positions in two days in Baku and will also start the grand prix at the front on Sunday, feared he would struggle to hold off at least one of the Red Bulls over a race – and so it proved.
This is the first ‘sprint’ weekend of the year and it runs to a new format to those events in the last two years. The Friday qualifying session decided the grid for the grand prix on Sunday.
Saturday is a whole separate day, starting with a qualifying session – known as the ‘sprint shoot-out’ – that sets the grid for this shorter ‘sprint’ race later on. (BBC)