Oscar winner Will Smith knew who to keep his fingers crossed for in Saudi Arabia: “Lewis is my man. I am here because of him.”
The 54-year-old saw a solid race by his good friend, the seven-time world champion finished fifth on the fastest street circuit in the world.
But the Mexican Sergio Pérez won. The 33-year-old started the race from pole position and ultimately won easily ahead of his Red Bull team-mate Max Verstappen. Fernando Alonso made it onto the podium for the second time in a row with his Aston Martin.
Mishap by Alonso
Fernando Alonso got off to the best start. But the 41-year-old Spaniard was not in the correct starting position – he had to serve the five-second penalty during his pit stop.
After a defect in qualifying, world champion Max Verstappen only started the race from 15th place and drove the superior Red Bull through the field like a hot knife through butter.
When Lance Stroll with his Aston Martin stopped after a third of the distance with a technical defect, the safety car picked up the field – and Max Verstappen was suddenly in close contact with the leader Pérez. For a moment it looked as if the Dutchman would have problems with the drive train again. But the Red Bull held out and Verstappen drove home in second place.
In the last lap of the race, Verstappen slammed the fastest lap on the asphalt. Ultimately, this was the reason why the Dutchman leads the World Championship with a one-point lead over his team-mate.
It continues in two weeks on April 2nd with the Australian Grand Prix in Melbourne.