Worst Possible Outcome for Ferrari as Red Bull, McLaren, Mercedes Podium in Canadian Grand Prix

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Ferrari's Horrible Race in Canada, Verstappen WinsClive Rose - Getty Images

Sunday in Montreal, Max Verstappen earned his sixth win of the 2024 season to stop the momentum of Ferrari in the Constructors standings. Both a McLaren driver, Lando Norris, and Mercedes driver, George Russell, joined the Dutchman on the podium to the horror of the Ferrari team.

Entering the Canadian Grand Prix, Ferrari was flying high after a win in the Monaco Grand Prix for Charles Leclerc, and a double podium with Carlos Sainz third place finish placed them with 24 points of Red Bull Racing for the Constructers Championship lead.

Neither driver scored points on the weekend, and their 24-point deficit ballooned to 49 points.


Max Verstappen and Red Bull had a hard start to qualifying this weekend before ultimately turning it on and almost captured his third consecutive pole in Montreal. Instead, George Russell would start on the pole after he and Verstappen had the exact same qualifying time.

Ferrari was unable to capitalize off of Verstappen missing the pole or his teammate Sergio Perez's failure to make it out of Q1 as Leclerc and Sainz both failed to make Q3 of qualifying. A strategy call was made to save their tires for the final stint and possible rain. The rain never came, and both drivers were unable to make it into the top 10 of qualifying, with Leclerc starting in 11th and Sainz in 12th.

Things got worse for both drivers on Sunday as both would earn a DNF for the first double DNF for a top team in the 2024 season. First, as rain returned to the track, Leclerc's Ferrari hit the pits to reset his steering system. At the same time, he was fitted for Hard tires while the rest of the field continued on inters tires. Three laps later, Leclerc was lapped by the top five before ultimately retiring from the race. With 16 laps remaining, Sainz spun, collecting the Williams of Alex Albon, knocking both drivers out of the race.

Mercedes entered the race weekend fourth in points with 96 points; after leading from pole position for the first 21 laps, Russell was passed by Norris and half a lap later by Verstappen. Still in the fight, Russell would bobble between fifth and second for the remainder of the race but never regain the lead, settling for third and Mercedes's first podium of the season.

With less than four laps remaining Russell found himself behind his teammate Lewis Hamilton, who was also chasing his first podium of the season with four laps remaining. With the changing of the guards happening in Mecades, team orders are seldom in play.

"It goes without saying, keep it clean, please," Toto Wolff told Russell over the radio as he cut to the inside of the track while Hamilton decided to defend the middle.

Norris finished second and was the only driver to overtake Verstappen during the race. Coming off of the pits, Norris nearly kept his lead after staying out to shorten his final stint. The location of the safety car helped Verstappen make the move to claim the race for the final time in the 70-lap race. Three races back, when Norris captured his first F1 win, the safety car worked for the drivers in reverse.

Norris was asked if it was the safety car that made the difference between his second-place finish and a potential win, "It helped me out in Miami, so I'm not going to be the one to complain."

Norris' teammate Oscar Piastri completed the top five, meaning the teams ranked third in fourth in the standings made up major ground on Ferrari in P2. With both sets of McLaren's and Mercedes finishing in the top five, the top teams shrunk the advantage Ferrari had on them, with McLaren's deficit lowering from 68 to 40 points and, while still a distant fourth, Mercedes gaining 28 unanswered points, placing them within 128 of Ferrari.

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