Virtual Dutch GP Results & Standings: Albon wins after thrilling battle with Leclerc
Interlagos hosted the Virtual Dutch GP, and what a race it ended up being as the F1 stars shone.
There is talk of Formula 1 returning behind closed doors in July, but for now, the Virtual GP’s are here to stay.
Charles Leclerc won last time in the Chinese GP, his second victory in a row. Leclerc has been the class of the field since joining for Vietnam, despite only picking up F1 2019 around a month ago. Five other current F1 stars alongside a number of celebrities were looking to stop the Ferrari man.
This weekend was meant to have the first Dutch GP since the 1980’s hosted at the revamped Zandvoort circuit. Codemasters have given us a sneak preview of how the track will look in F1 2020, but the circuit isn’t avaiable in F1 2019.
The fans spoke and they voted for Brazil’s Interlagos to be showcased today. The Sao Paulo track has hosted some classics over the decades and produced an incredible spectacle in the virtual world?
Virtual Dutch GP Highlights
Stoffel Vandoorne qualified in pole position but it all went pair-shaped for the Belgian off the line. The Mercedes driver collected George Russell and Pietro Fittipaldi in what was a huge first corner crash.
It was deja vu for viewers as Alex Albon and Charles Leclerc were left battling for the lead after the T1 pile-up. The pair swapped places almost every lap with some brilliant overtaking maneuvers on show.
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Nicholas Latifi and Antonio Giovinazzi were both running in the top five during their opening stints but the pair ended up colliding at Turn 5. Giovinazzi retired from the race, while Latifi dropped out of the points but later recovered to xth.
Albon went longer for his first stint than Leclerc and opted for the faster medium tyres for his second stint. The battle between the pair raged for the entire race with the lead sometimes changing three times a lap.
Albon saw the checkered flag first but Leclerc’s 3-second penalty for track extensions was the deciding factor. This time penalty dropped the Ferrari driver below Russell too, who had an excellent recovery after being caught up in the first corner crash.
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Lando Norris did make the race but suffered a drive-through penalty for a jump start. When the McLaren driver did take his penalty, he suffered another five second penalty for speeding in the pit lane. Despite that though, Norris still managed to finish in tenth, a fine drive in the end.
So it was Ablon in P1, followed onto the podium by Russell and Leclerc, but where did everyone else finish?
|1||Alex Albon||Red Bull Racing|
|3||Charles Leclerc||FDA Hublot Esports Team|
|7||Enzo Fittipaldi||FDA Hublot Esports Team|
|11||David Schumacher||Racing Point|
|13||Ben Stokes||Red Bull Racing|
|14||Juan Manuel Correa||Alfa Romeo|
|15||Alessio Romagnoli||Alpha Tauri|
|16||Jelle van Vucht||McLaren|
|17||Stuart Broad||Alpha Tauri|
|18||Jimmy Broadbent||Racing Point|
|19 (DNF)||Antonio Giovinazzi||Alfa Romeo|
|20 (DNF)||Pietro Fittipaldi||Haas|
Social Media Reaction
The running joke that is Lando Norris’ internet connection reared its ugly head again. The McLaren driver failed to make qualifying but avoid another DNS as he made the start of the race. At least he could see the funny side of it though.
READ MORE: #ChallengeLando details announced!
Most of the reaction on Twitter was centred around the battle for the lead. The fight was reminiscent of the slipstream-fest that we’re used to seeing at the Indy 500, not Formula 1!
What’s the next round?
The next round of the Virtual GP season will take place in a week’s time. This time it will be the Spanish GP, which will be raced at the Circuit de Catalunya.
Keep your eyes peeled on our site for all of the driver announcements ahead of the race!