Max Verstappen hails ‘great win’ from ninth on grid after being booed in Miami
Max Verstappen hailed his victory at the Miami Grand Prix as “simply f****** lovely” after he beat Sergio Perez and the boo brigade to extend his world championship lead.
Verstappen was jeered before and after the race, as he celebrated a triumph that moves him 14 points clear of team-mate Perez, who finished second.
Fernando Alonso was third for Aston Martin. George Russell and Lewis Hamilton finished fourth and sixth for Mercedes.
Verstappen divides opinion in the sport and he was targeted by the Hard Rock Stadium crowd as he was presented on the grid ahead of the 57-lap race by rapper LL Cool J.
What a great win today! A very strong race 🙌
The car felt really good and the strategy paid off perfectly @redbullracing 👏 This is a fantastic 1-2 team result again, let’s keep this going 💪
Thank you, Miami – You have been great🌴 pic.twitter.com/FdTdxeMITR
— Max Verstappen (@Max33Verstappen) May 7, 2023
But the boos did not faze the double world champion as he raced from ninth on the grid to top spot to claim his third win from five rounds.
“Simply f****** lovely,” said Verstappen on the radio before he was also jeered on the podium as he collected his winner’s trophy.
Verstappen added: “It was a good race. I stayed out of trouble in the beginning. I had a good battle with Checo and we kept it clean and that was the most important thing. A great win today.
“Yesterday was a setback in qualifying but today we kept it calm and clean and winning a race from ninth is always very satisfying.”
Verstappen, who started on a different strategy to team-mate and pole-sitter Perez, was up to second on lap 15. He stopped for tyres with a dozen laps to go and then cruised into the lead by out-braking Perez at the opening corner on lap 48.
Perez said: “I gave it my all. The first stint was poor and that compromised my race.
“Max was particularly good today so a well-deserved win for him. We need to analyse what happened today because I didn’t have the pace.”