Formula 1 returned to the Netherlands for the first time in 36 years. And Max Verstappen did not disappoint the orange army taking a seemingly easy and dominant win in front of his home crowd. As Max would put it, it was simply lovely.
The golden boy of Red Bull Racing is now 3.5 points ahead of Lewis Hamilton in the championship standings. Even after a couple of unlucky races this season, Redbull has managed to stanch the lead back.
Aside from Max taking the win, other notable drives include Giovinazzi taking P7 which is the highest finish for Alfa Romeo this season and, Pier Gasly taking an impressive P4. Sergio Perez managed to finish in P8 after a pitlane start because he had a new power unit fitted to his car. Perez admitted that before the race he felt that finishing in the points would have been impossible. Perez ended up giving what will go down as one of the best recovery drives of this season.
The pace of Mercedes was never a threat to Redbull with Hamilton not getting close enough to use DRS.
Next, we head to Monza, Italy and then Sochi, Russia. The next two tracks historically favour Mercedes, but it's hard to imagine Redbull not carrying their winning streak a little further.
What about Zandvoort as a future F1 venue?
Well, it was a little boring. Zandvoort is an old school track that's difficult to overtake on although, not as difficult as Monaco.
Does it deserve a spot on future F1 calendars? Surprisingly, I'd say yes. With the new regulation changes that come into play next year, with the goal of making the cars smaller to make overtaking easier, it looks like the 2022 cars will suit Zandvoort much more. Not to mention the banks and turns of Zandvoort make for excellent TV coverage. It's good to see that Max gets a home race as well. He's without a doubt a future world champion who deserves a home race.
The Haas boys' falling out
Haas team principal Guenther Steiner can't catch a break, it seems that whoever he puts in the cars, they seem to fall out with each other.
During qualifying, we saw both Schumacher and Mazepin block Sebastian Vettel of Aston Martin from getting out of Q1.
The Haas duo was at it again at the end of the first lap of the Dutch Grand Prix, with Mazepin – who’d passed Schumacher on Lap 1 into Turn 8 – appearing to chop aggressively in front of his teammate as Schumacher attempted to re-pass the Russian down the main straight – much to Schumacher’s displeasure.
“I think obviously again there was a little coming together with my teammate for some reason which I don’t understand,” said Schumacher. “But you know, I think obviously it seems that is the way it is.
“It just seems he’s got this thing in his head where he wants to, at any cost, be in front of me, and that’s okay, I have nothing against it,” added Schumacher. “But I think if we go to the point where we defend very aggressively against a teammate where you don’t have anything to gain, then I think maybe that’s not the right approach.
It takes a lot of wind up the mild-mannered Schumacher but it looks like Mazepin has done just that with Schumacher saying that he doesn't think that the issue can be resolved.
The Russel and Mercedes rumours continue
For months now, there's been a rumour in the paddock that George Russell will sign with Mercedes for next season.
This weekend, while George was being interviewed by Jensen Button for Sky F1, Redbull boss Christian Horner interrupted the interview and asked Jensen if he was congratulating George on his new deal. George nervously replied: "I don’t know what you’re congratulating about."
During the same interview, George said that he believed his first win would be next year.
And according to the ex Mercedes driver Nico Rosberg, a certain streaming company (Netflix) was invited into the Mercedes bosses Toto Wolff's office to record George putting pen to paper.
Once more, on Monday 6th September it was revealed that Valtteri Bottas would move to Alfa Romeo from Mercedes, leaving a spare Mercedes seat which would need to be filled.
So, while it isn't official, it does seem that George Russell will be in a Mercedes next year.