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Major takeaways from the 2020 Portuguese Grand Prix

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Roar Guru
26th October, 2020
4

Lewis Hamilton made history in Formula One breaking Michael Schumacher’s record for the most race wins ever. But after the race concluded, here’s what we learned from the Portuguese Grand Prix.

Lewis Hamilton is the GOAT
How much can still be said about this man? Whether you’re a fan of his or not, accumulating 93 race wins is unbelievable and he still has a lot in the tank. He could genuinely set a record that is unreachable and whether it’s dry or wet, nothing seems to deter him apart from personal human error.

Starting in 2007, he got his Formula One career off to a flying start being one point shy of the Driver’s Championship to Kimi Raikkonen.

Since then, he’s continued to dominate Formula One and had some amazing battles with the likes of Fernando Alonso and Nico Rosberg and is poised to claim yet another world championship in 2020. We are witnessing greatness here today.

Charles Leclerc continues to save Ferrari
Leclerc continues to show his quality by maximising the performance of the Ferrari car after hanging around in the Top 4. He has outperformed Sebastian Vettel in every way possible and has accumulated over 80 percent of Ferrari’s points.

With Leclerc currently sitting fifth in the drivers’ championship, Ferrari will be hoping that they can rectify their issues for 2021 and become a threat again with Carlos Sainz joining the team. If they can re-develop their engine, don’t be surprised to see Leclerc mixing up with Hamilton, Valteri Bottas and Max Verstappen once again.

Portugal provided great overtaking action
The first number of laps were insane with plenty of racing with Sainz and Lando Norris challenging the Mercedes early. Throughout the whole race, every driver was vulnerable to the overtake with DRS on the straights. The roads were wide enough which allowed the drivers to use space on the outside to jockey for positioning.

Raikkonen had made up ten positions on the opening laps in an unbelievable sequence to start. Outside of the Top 3, positions were exchanged consistently from the midfield below. There were plenty of entertaining battles of wheel to wheel action and Portugal has probably been the only track where overtaking was consistent.

Some interesting choices of strategy as some drivers particularly Esteban Ocon were able to persevere with their tyres for many laps on the new track surface.

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But overall, while Hamilton, Bottas and Verstappen were lapping everyone, the only spectacle for viewers were the battles for the final points available from the midfield down.

Lewis Hamilton on track

(Photo by Mark Thompson/Getty Images)

Pierre Gasly continues to shine at Alpha Tauri
Gasly has gone under the radar however he has certainly been a shining light for Alpha Tauri this season. He seems so much happier in 2020 and after his Red Bull experiment didn’t work in 2019, that has not impacted him at all.

After 12 races for Red Bull, Gasly accumulated 63 points in 2019. In 2020, Gasly has also accumulated 63 points in 12 races for Alpha Tauri including a race win in Italy. This only puts him one point behind Alex Albon who replaced Gasly and is under his own pressure.

Outside of not finishing races in Hungary and Tuscany, Gasly has for the most part, collected points as well as put pressure on drivers to accumulate points. Now he’s putting the pressure on Charles Leclerc and Ferrari to stay ahead in the driver’s and constructor’s championship.

Max Verstappen is incredibly unlucky
Verstappen is one of the most talented and fearless drivers we have seen in the sport in recent times. Outside of three unfinished races in Austria, Italy and Tuscany, Verstappen has finished on a podium every single time in 2020.

Unfortunately for Verstappen, he’s still having to come up against the greatness of Lewis Hamilton. At 23 years of age, Verstappen still has many opportunities to become World Champion and you would fancy him to have a championship sometime in the future.

There is a record that Verstappen is inching closer towards. He could be a driver that has the most Grand Prix wins without a championship. The record holder is Stirling Moss who has 16 race wins while Verstappen is currently on nine wins.

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Overall, it’s a joy to watch Max Verstappen and fortunately he is there to mix things up with Mercedes from time to time. It won’t be long before he dominates Formula One.