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In The Driver's Seat: Rules to make racing more competitive welcome, but not their side effects

Red Bull's Dutch driver Max Verstappen wins the Formula One Azerbaijan Grand Prix on June 12, 2022. PHOTO: AFP

As if things couldn't get much worse in his 2022 quest for an eighth World Championship, the Azerbaijan Grand Prix has raised questions whether Lewis Hamilton will be fit enough after battling his way to a courageous fourth place to drive his Mercedes W13 in next weekend's Canadian GP.

On the face of it, Sunday's race was all about Max Verstappen's dominant victory over team-mate Sergio Perez - yet another 1-2 for Red Bull - and Ferrari's dramatic double retirement due to mechanical failures. And indeed, in championship terms, of course it was. Verstappen's 25th win - drawing him level with the great Jim Clark's tally - draws him 21 points ahead of the Mexican Monaco winner, who is himself now up to second place overall and 13 points ahead of former runaway leader Charles Leclerc.

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