MELBOURNE, Australia (AP) — With one overtaking maneuver and consistent speed, Red Bull driver Max Verstappen showed that the 2019 Formula One season is unlikely to descend into another two-team race.
Verstappen overtook two-time defending Australian Grand Prix champion Sebastian Vettel on the outside just after halfway through the season-opening race on Sunday and kept powering away from the Ferrari ace to finish third. It was his sixth consecutive F1 podium finish, and delivered automaker Honda its first since 2008.
Most of the talk after winter testing was about the pace of the Ferrari cars, and if that would be enough to end the domination Mercedes has had on the F1 championships in recent years.
Valtteri Bottas led five-time world champion Lewis Hamilton in a