Verstappen beats Mercedes for pole, closes in on 14th win | WGN 720 Radio

MEXICO CITY (AP) — Max Verstappen inched closer to a record 14th victory of the Formula One season, holding off the Mercedes pair and Mexican favorite Sergio Perez to win Saturday’s pole for the Mexico City Grand Prix.

It was the sixth pole of the season for Verstappen, who claimed his second successive F1 title earlier this month. Red Bull wrapped up the constructors’ title last week.

With three races left in the season, the final remaining drama revolves around Verstappen trying to equal Michael Schumacher and Sebastian Vettel’s single-season wins record, Lewis Hamilton looking to avoid the first winless season of his career and Perez tries to become the first Mexican to win a Formula 1 race at the Hermanas Rodríguez circuit.

With the filled crowd they chanted “Ole! Ole! Ole! Che-ko! Che-ko!” every time Perez took the track, the roar was deafening as he finished in the top three. But Hamilton, whose first lap was disrupted, still had to complete the qualifying session.

Hamilton finished third behind team-mate George Russell as the Mercedes drivers look for their first win of the season. Hamilton, a seven-time champion, has never gone winless since making his F1 debut in 2007.

He was second to Verstappen a week ago at Circuit of the Americas in Austin, Texas, where Verstappen claimed his record 13th win of the season. Verstappen didn’t promise to do Perez any favors to help Perez win in front of his adoring fans, but Perez did himself no favors by qualifying fourth.

Before Sunday, Red Bull had won eight races in a row.


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