2018 United States Thoughts
THE BIG PICTURE: Not quite yet. But the real battle now is for the constructors, and Ferrari still has a definite shot at that. That's where the bonus money is for all the workers.
TRACK: Still an entertaining track to watch F1.
EVENT: Full grandstands again. F1 is still making it in America.
QUALIFYING: Ferrari gets closer than expected, but for Vettel it doesn't matter as he drops three places, Hamilton is still quickest, Verstappen wrecks his car on the curbs put in because of him, Ocon shines, and Vandoorne is the slowest of the slow again.
RACE: A scintillating finish.
START: Raikkonen takes advantage of his better tires, Hamilton thinks better on being too aggressive, Grosjean out brakes himself as usual, Alonso doesn't like playing with the bottom feeders, and Vettel manages to mess it up again.
RAIKKONEN: His fans were more excited than he was... A popular victory. But more importantly, a deserved victory. A great start. A great defense before his first pit stop. And took care of his tires in the final stretch.
VETTEL: Gee, a red car facing the wrong way on the first lap. Where have we seen this before...?
FERRARI: This time, they got the strategy calls right. They also showed they could handle the warmer temperatures over a race distance.
HAMILTON: Definitely very cautious. And why not. Lewis still has this thing virtually locked up.
BOTTAS: Will Valtteri provide Mercedes with enough points to hold onto the constructors lead?
MERCEDES: Earlier in the year, they did not pit under yellow when they should have. This time, they pitted under yellow when they should not have.
VERSTAPPEN: Another aggressive but mature comeback drive. And going from 18th to ninth on the first lap. Sure, we're critical of Max at times, but he sure is fun to watch.
RICCIARDO: The DNFs just keep piling up for Daniel's last Red Bull season. And now holes in his motorhome the size of his fist are appearing...
HULKENBERG: Nico is getting some of his mojo back.
SAINZ: And Carlos is keeping him honest.
RACING POINT, HAAS: It's impossible to cheat the fuel system with all the sensors the FIA has. So, don't make a mistake either. That will be instantly discovered as well.
HARTLEY: Looked a lot better again. Not that it's going to make any difference for Brendon.
TORO ROSSO: Who to hire? Who to hire? Who to hire?
STROLL: Looked lost out there.
HAAS: A miserable home race. And losing time trying to catch Renault for fourth place.
LIBERTY: No way, no how was Texas ever going to allow Liberty Media to tell them they couldn't use the Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders. No way, no how.
WORD OF THE WEEKEND: Finally.
STAT OF THE WEEKEND: 113 -- The number of races since Raikkonen's last victory, breaking Riccardo Patrese's record of 99 races.
HISTORICAL STAT OF THE WEEKEND: Sky Sports was correct. It is one of the most bizarre stats in Formula 1. Every time F1 runs a race on October 21, the drivers' championship is clinched. Until this year. 1984 at the last race in Portugal when Niki Lauda finished second to Alain Prost to beat the Frenchman by a half point. 1990 in the penultimate race in Japan in the infamous Senna-Prost first turn collision that clinched the title for the Brazilian. 2007 in the final race at Brazil when Kimi Raikkonen leapfrogged the two McLaren drivers, Hamilton and Alonso, who were too busy fighting each other.
QUOTE OF THE WEEKEND: Vintage Kimi in how he feels about his win, deadpanning the whole time, "Obviously I'm happy, just proving some people wrong it's enough fun for me."
QUOTE OF THE WEEKEND RUNNERUP: Max Verstappen was so fast, he was literally coming out of his clothes, "I even destroyed my shoe, because I pushed that hard. My shoe is completely worn out."
SCHEDULE: South of the border to Mexico City where Hamilton has another shot to put this away.
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