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Verstappen knew Hamilton had more to lose in Malaysia F1 fight

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Max Verstappen was encouraged to be bold in his fight with Lewis Hamilton in Sunday’s Malaysian Grand Prix as he knew the Formula 1 championship leader has more to risk by battling for position.

Verstappen passed Hamilton on Lap 4 in Malaysia en route to his second F1 win, dominating the remainder of the race and finishing 12 seconds clear of the Mercedes driver at the checkered flag.

Verstappen sensed from the beginning there would be an opportunity to fight with Hamilton, and was happy to force the issue knowing his rival had a championship lead to protect.

“I think in the beginning straightaway the car felt good. I saw Lewis struggling with traction, so I used my battery as much as I could,” Verstappen said.

“He has more to lose than me in the championship, so I went for it at Turn 1. From there on I could do my own race.

“The car was unbelievable today. I had the pace. If I needed to speed up, I speeded up. It’s amazing, a very tough race. Incredible to win.”

The result marked only Verstappen’s second appearance on the podium this season, having only finished in the top three back in China, the second round of the season.

In a year that has left the Dutchman largely frustrated with frequent reliability issues, he admitted the victory was all the sweeter.

“Especially after the season I’ve had, I think this victory came at a very good time,” Verstappen said.

“I was really happy when I crossed the line.”

Coming just one day after his 20th birthday, the result sees Verstappen become the youngest driver in F1 history to win multiple grands prix, beating the record set by Sebastian Vettel at the 2009 Chinese Grand Prix.

Red Bull Air Race: Yoshi Muroya joins Sato as Japanese champs at Indy

Photo: Joerg Mitter/Red Bull Content Pool
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Takuma Sato isn’t the only major Japanese athlete to take home top honors at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway this year. Countryman Yoshihide Muroya joined him in that on Sunday after winning Red Bull Air Race at IMS, and the Red Bull Air Race World Championship in the process.

Fittingly, the 101st Indianapolis 500 champion was there on site to join him in the celebration.

Muroya flew with a track-record run in the final and erased the four-point deficit to points leader Martin Sonka. The record run came after a disappointing qualifying effort of 11th in the 14-pilot field in the Master Class.

A day after the win, Muroya joined Sato in heading to Sato’s new Verizon IndyCar Series team, Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing’s, Indianapolis-based shop.

A few social posts from Muroya’s victory and the subsequent celebration are below.

CHECKING OUT EACH OTHER’S RIDES

ASTLES BREAKS THOUGH AS WELL

Muroya wasn’t alone among big winners at the Speedway. In the Challenger Class, Melanie Astles of France became the first woman to win a major race at IMS, and is the first female winner in the Red Bull Air Race World Championship.

Nine women have competed in the Indianapolis 500 (Janet Guthrie, Lyn St. James, Sarah Fisher, Danica Patrick, Milka Duno, Simona de Silvestro, Pippa Mann, Ana Beatriz, Katherine Legge) and Mann is the first woman to have been on the pole position at IMS, having done so for the Freedom 100 in 2010 in Indy Lights.

Photo: Joerg Mitter/Red Bull Content Pool