Verstappen makes it eight wins in a row with Belgian GP success

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Max Verstappen was in imperious form as he came from sixth on the grid to win the Belgian Grand Prix.

The Red Bull driver’s eighth consecutive victory in the final race before the summer break extended his championship lead to 125 points.

Verstappen led Sergio Perez home to a Red Bull one-two but was in another league from his team-mate.

Ferrai’s Chrarles Leclerc took third ahead of Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton and Aston Martin’s Fernando Alonso.

Verstappen drove cautiously in the early laps as he picked his way up from his unusually low grid position, caused by a five-place grid penalty for using too many gearbox parts after he had qualified on pole by 0.8 seconds.

The world champion was up to fourth on the first lap but did not pass Hamilton until lap six and Leclerc until lap nine, both times using the DRS overtaking aid to overtake into the Les Combes chicane at the end of the long Kemmel straight.

Perez, who had passed Leclerc for the lead up the same straight on the first lap, hung on in front until his pit stop on lap 13.

Verstappen pitted the next time around, and only then began to show something like his true potential.

Emerging two seconds back from Perez, Verstappen was a second back after his first lap out of the pits, on his tail next time around, and ahead halfway along the Kemmel straight on lap 17.

What followed was a crushing demonstration of superiority over even a driver in the same car.

The Dutchman was 1.6secs ahead by the end of that lap, driven it two seconds faster than Perez .

He took it relatively cautiously on the next lap, extending his lead by ‘only’ 0.7secs, but then was 1.4secs faster the next time around. (BBC Sport)

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