Qatar Grand Prix: Lewis Hamilton says Max Verstappen has done ‘exceptional job’

Verstappen will win the Formula 1 drivers’ championship in Saturday’s sprint race in Qatar as long as team-mate Sergio Perez does not score at least six more points than him. Verstappen will be champion once again if he finishes at least sixth in the sprint, no matter what Perez does. There is no avoiding that fact for Verstappen, but he is focused simply on winning this weekend. The Dutchman, who has won 13 of the 16 races held so far this season, said: “We are having an amazing year and we just come into this weekend and want to win again. Verstappen said he had no feelings either way as to whether winning it in a sprint race would be an anti-climax. “If it’s Saturday or Sunday, I don’t think it matters a lot,” Verstappen said. “The car is in a really great window, except Singapore [last month], but all the other races it was really nice to drive. Verstappen was also lauded by a series of his rivals. Perez, who has won just two races, said: “Max has done a tremendous job. But Hamilton said he thought Andretti’s entry would be “great”.

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