JIDDAH, Saudi Arabia (AP) — Formula One champion Max Verstappen overtook Charles Leclerc three laps from the end of the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix for his first win of the season and 21st of his career on Sunday.
The race under floodlights was held two days after an attack on a nearby oil depot by Yemen’s Houthi rebels.
Leclerc was aiming for back-to-back victories after winning the season-opener in Bahrain from pole position last Sunday, but Verstappen overtook him on Lap 47 of 50 after some thrilling wheel-to-wheel racing between them.
Leclerc remains top of the standings after two races.
Carlos Sainz Jr. finished in third place to make it another podium double for Ferrari after he was second in Bahrain where Leclerc had brilliantly repelled three attacks from Verstappen, who retired right near the end of that race with teammate Sergio Perez.
Perez bounced back with a superb pole position on Saturday but finished fourth, while seven-time F1 champion Lewis Hamilton could manage only one point for Mercedes in 10th place after starting 15th.
His teammate George Russell fared better in fifth but Mercedes again looked way off the pace.