The Formula 1 championship season may be sealed, but that didn't stop all drivers from putting out quite the spectacle during the Brazilian Grand Prix. It was definitely a race you shouldn't have missed. From wheel to wheel action to unexpected podiums, this year's running of the race was one for the books.
From the get go, drivers went all out with Vettel and Hamilton nearly coming together in the first turn. Leclerc, on the other hand, was squeezing his way to the front of the pack after starting from the back. Even the mid-field battle was intense with a three way battle between Daniel Ricciardo, Kevin Magnussen, and Lando Norris. It all ended in tears when Ricciardo and Magnussen touched wheels, sending the latter to the runoff area. Ricciardo was then handed a five-second penalty.
By that time, Verstappen had kept the lead for a majority of the race. Mercedes-AMG tried to counter that by undercutting the Red Bull driver. Verstappen then pitted a lap after Hamilton and pulled off a stunning 1.9 second tire change. However, he was held back by Williams' Robert Kubica who suddenly pulled in front Verstappen. This allowed Hamilton to sneak past Verstappen.
But just when we thought Hamilton would run away with it again, Verstappen made a lunge at the first turn to relinquish the lead. There was more drama to unfold about a quarter through the race. Bottas suffered a blown engine, forcing a safety car period. This bunched up all the drivers and the substantial lead that Verstappen had built up was diminished.
Upon restart, Hamilton had the jump on the Red Bull driver. However, Verstappen defended his position by placing his car in a way that would make it difficult to pass. At the same team, Alex Albon was making strides, going wheel to wheel with Vettel for second place. The rookie driver further impressed the crowd by actually beating the four-time champ out of the essess. Even more impressive was his move on Hamilton, promoting Albon to second.
With the Ferraris demoted out of the podium, both Leclerc and Vettel duked it out to be the top driver for the team. Unfortunately, they would take themselves out when Vettel veered straight into the path of Leclerc and crashed into each other. This allowed mid-fielders to move up the ranks.
It appeared to be a Red Bull 1-2 but Hamilton ended up shunting Albon out of second place with the latter tumbling down the order and denied of his first podium finish. Hamilton was slapped with a five-second penalty for avoidable contact.
When all the debris cleared and the dust settled, this year's Brazilian Grand Prix brought in two new drivers to the podium with Pierre Gasly in second and Carlos Sainz Jr. in third. All in all, it was a wild race that saw neither of the Mercedes AMGs or Ferraris on the podium, Max clinching a lights to flag victory, Albon robbed of his first podium, redemption for Gasly and the spotlight on Sainz Jr.
With this much excitement in the final stages of the 2019 season, we're looking forward to 2020. We can't wait to see these cars and drivers back on the grid in Adelaide by March next year.