Verstappen finishes second in Azerbaijan GP; Nyck de Vries does not finish
Max Verstappen finished second in the Grand Prix in Baku, Azerbaijan, on Sunday. His race was made more difficult by Nyck de Vries dropping out of the race in the tenth lap. Verstappen’s Red Bull teammate Sergio Perez finished in the top spot.
Verstappen started the race in second with Charles Leclerc of Ferrari taking pole position after qualifying. Verstappen finished third in the sprint race on Saturday, clashing with George Russell after a collision during the race. De Vries started the race in 18th.
Verstappen raced past Leclerc in the fourth lap to take the lead in the race as De Vries made a fantastic start, climbing up to 12th. But disaster struck for the 28-year-old in the tenth lap as he made contact with the wall, with his car getting damaged. De Vries became the first driver not to finish the race, but it also had a negative effect on Verstappen, who was in third upon the restart after the deployment of a safety car.
The reigning champion raced past Leclerc for the second time in the race to get to the second spot behind Perez shortly after the restart. However, Verstappen could never get close to Perez for the rest of the race.
The Red Bull team asked Verstappen if there was a problem. “The balance between diff and engine braking is not good!” was the reply.
It was another 1-2 for Red Bull as Perez picked up his second victory of the season, having already won the Grand Prix in Saudi Arabia.
The Safety Car was a bit unlucky, the tyres were overheating, and also the balance, I was struggling, and once I got that sorted, I was quite good again in the last ten laps. We know it's a very long season; you keep learning - it can never be perfect all the time." Verstappen said in the post-race interview.