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Stewards Award 2019 Austrian Grand Prix To Verstappen

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After several hours of delay, Formula One race stewards finally made a decision and that decision was to award Red Bull’s Max Verstappen the victory over Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc in the 2019 Austrian Grand Prix at the Red Bull Ring.

Leclerc was the pole-sitter and Verstappen was alongside him in the first row at the start of the race but Verstappen stalled out at the green light and immediately dropped several places as he recovered from the stall. That meant Verstappen spent the majority of the race catching up, which he finally did with three laps to go and then passed Leclerc at Turn 3 as the two cars banged wheels on the pass.

That clash sent the incident to race stewards for review and the review dragged on for several hours as video evidence was reviewed and the drivers’ perspectives were given. After all that, race stewards ultimately they decided no further action was necessary and explained their decision-making process in an official statement:

“Car 33 [Verstappen] sought to overtake Car 16 [Leclerc] at Turn 3 on lap 69 by out-braking Car 16. When doing so, Car 33 was alongside Car 16 on the entry of the corner and was in full control of the car while attempting the overtaking move on the inside of Car 16.

However, both Car 33 and Car 16 proceeded to negotiate the corner alongside each other but there was clearly insufficient space for both cars to do so. Shortly after the late apex, while exiting the corner, there was contact between the two cars.

In the totality of the circumstances, we did not consider that either driver was wholly or predominantly to blame for the incident. We consider that this is a racing incident.”

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