By Robert Haile
It has been a long time coming and many thought it might not be Mercedes are 2022 Grand Prix winners as George Russell take the Brazilian Grand Prix.
Not only a win but a one-two as Lewis Hamilton took second ahead of Ferrari’s Carlos Sainz as the teams battle for second in the constructors championship.
Sprint and now Grand Prix winner George Russell said: “What an amazing feeling. A huge thank you to the whole team for making this possible.
“It’s been an emotional rollercoaster, this season, this race. I felt in control, Lewis was super-fast and then when I saw the safety car, I thought this is going to be a difficult end.
“He put me under so much pressure. But I’m so happy to come away with the victory. On the in-lap, all of these memories came flooding back, starting off with my Mum and Dad in go Karting, going through and all the support I’ve had from the rest of my family, my girlfriend, my trainer, my manager.
“The likes of Gwen, who first gave me the opportunity to get on the programme with Mercedes, and James Vowles and Toto. I can’t thank everyone enough.”
After taking victory in the sprint race, Russell led teammate Hamilton off the line but would soon have to do it again.
Having taken pole for the sprint race Haas’ Kevin Magnussen’s race came to a quick end with a collision with McLaren’s Daniel Ricciardo bringing out the Safety Car.
Russell led the field away again but Hamilton and Max Verstappen and then Lando Norris and Charles Leclerc all colliding with Verstappen and Norris getting 5 second penalties for their parts in the incidents.
Everything calmed down with the pits stops coming and going with Russell leading then Norris brought out the Safety Car again as he stopped on lap 52.
Mercedes let the duo race when the Safety Car came in on lap 60 while Alpine told their two drivers Esteban Ocon and Fernando Alonso further back in eighth and ninth told them not to fight each other.
That is how it stayed at the front with Mercedes taking their first 1-2 of the season with Ferrari in third and fourth with Sainz and Leclerc.
Alpine have one hand on fourth as Alonso finished fifth and Verstappen and Perez in sixth and seventh.
Ocon took eighth as Alfa Romeo’s Valtteri Bottas came home ninth and Aston Martin’s Lance Stroll scored the final point in tenth with teammate Sebastian Vettel in eleventh.
Alfa Romeo’s Zhou Guanyu took twelfth ahead of Mick Schumacher with AlphaTauri and Williams splitting the final four places as Pierre Gasly beat Alex Albon, Nicholas Latifi with Yuki Tsunoda the last running car.
Both McLaren drivers, Norris and Ricciardo, did not finish along with Haas’ Magnussen.
Going into the final race of the season it is still all to play for in the constructors championship and it is a straight shootout between Perez and Leclerc for second place in the drivers championship.
There is one more Formula One race left and it is back to the Middle East with the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix on 18-20 November.
- Max Verstappen (Red Bull) – 429
- Charles Leclerc (Ferrari) – 290
- Sergio Perez (Red Bull) – 290
- George Russell (Mercedes) – 265
- Lewis Hamilton (Mercedes) – 240
- Carlos Sainz (Ferrari) – 234
- Lando Norris (McLaren) – 113
- Esteban Ocon (Alpine) – 86
- Fernando Alonso (Alpine) – 81
- Valtteri Bottas (Alfa Romeo) – 49
- Sebastian Vettel (Aston Martin) – 36
- Daniel Ricciardo (McLaren) – 35
- Kevin Magnussen (Haas) – 25
- Pierre Gasly (AlphaTauri) – 23
- Lance Stroll (Aston Martin) – 14
- Mick Schumacher (Haas) – 12
- Yuki Tsunoda (AlphaTauri) – 12
- Zhou Guanyu (Alfa Romeo) – 6
- Alex Albon (Williams) – 4
- Nicholas Latifi (Williams) – 2
- Nyck De Vries (Williams) – 2
- Nico Hulkenberg (Aston Martin) – 0
- Red Bull – 719
- Ferrari – 524
- Mercedes – 505
- Alpine – 167
- McLaren – 148
- Alfa Romeo – 55
- Aston Martin – 50
- Haas – 37
- AlphaTauri – 35
- Williams – 8